This week we decided to explore infinity and beyond! Join us as we learn about space, train to be an astronaut, blast off, and go on some ...

Backyard Summer Camps 2022 - Space Week

 


This week we decided to explore infinity and beyond! Join us as we learn about space, train to be an astronaut, blast off, and go on some space missions! 

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  This week's camp was requested by Lil C and Squidgy. They had downloaded a superhero mod for Minecraft and were in total superhero mod...

Backyard Summer Camps 2022 - Superhero Week

 


This week's camp was requested by Lil C and Squidgy. They had downloaded a superhero mod for Minecraft and were in total superhero mode. So when they asked for Superhero Camp, I challenged Lil C to create a bunch of fun activities to do - and she delivered! I think she filled in about half of the calendar on her own and I just had to fill in the blank squares. It was so nice getting her creative input!

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  This week's camp takes us into the kitchen to explore the science of baking and all sorts of other chemical  and matter changes that o...

Backyard Summer Camps 2022 - Kitchen Chemistry Week


 
This week's camp takes us into the kitchen to explore the science of baking and all sorts of other chemical  and matter changes that occur when we combine ingredients, add air, heat, and freeze. Best of all, each day will have a science experiment that you can eat! Those are definitely my favorite kinds of science experiments.

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  Chocolate chip cookies come in all kinds of textures, shapes, and sizes - not to mention the ways to change up the add-ins, chips, chunks,...

Chocolate Chip Cookie Science - A Tasty Experiment!

 


Chocolate chip cookies come in all kinds of textures, shapes, and sizes - not to mention the ways to change up the add-ins, chips, chunks, white, milk, dark chocolate, M&Ms...but what happens when you don't have enough cookies for all of your friends?

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During this week's Backyard Summer Camp, we'll be traveling the world exploring different habitats and the animals who live in them!...

Backyard Summer Camps 2022 - Hands on Habitats Week


During this week's Backyard Summer Camp, we'll be traveling the world exploring different habitats and the animals who live in them! We love sensory bins and they are a great way to learn about various habitats - and also great to do outside in the summer so the mess stays out of the house!

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  My kids were SOOOO excited about Ninja Camp. We recently got the game Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Shredder's Revenge and not only w...

Backyard Summer Camps 2022 - Ninja Week

 


My kids were SOOOO excited about Ninja Camp. We recently got the game Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Shredder's Revenge and not only was it really fun to play - you can play with up to 6 players for a chaotic hilarious time - but the kids became obsessed with Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles! Of course I went through my own TMNT phase back in the 90s so they just brought me right back to my youth. Anyway, the prevalence of TMNT in our house made choosing the first theme for our backyard summer camps super easy! And the best part is, you can join Ninja Camp in your own backyard or house!

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  I LOVE children's books that support mental and emotional health. I feel it's a topic that was completely overlooked when I was gr...

'Stressy Jessy' Book Review

 


I LOVE children's books that support mental and emotional health. I feel it's a topic that was completely overlooked when I was growing up and I personally don't have a great handle on stress and anxiety or fully understand what really makes me, me. So when I find books like "Stressy Jessy" by Carmel Shami and Rani Bar-Segev, I get really excited! 

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A post for "Stressy Jessy" popped up in my Facebook feed one day and I immediately said, that's a book I need to read and share! As a mom, my brain is constantly filled to the brim and bubbling over with tasks, ideas, worries...you name it! And I am definitely not the best at focusing on the most important things and setting the rest aside. There have also been times Lil C couldn't get to sleep at night because she couldn't stop her brain from thinking. I figured if Lil C and I had trouble quieting our brains, I knew there had to be lots more people out there with the same struggles! So I reached out to author Carmel Shami and she was generous enough to send me a copy of her book to share with you all!

After reading the book, I am certain that "Stressy Jessy" is an amazing resource to add to your bookshelf. Jessy's story is simple, straight-forward, and relatable. He has typical kid stresses - an argument with a friend, a teacher who yells, difficult homework - and when all those thoughts won't stop swimming through his head, he turns to his mom to help him quiet them. Mom's strategy is simple, yet effective: organize your thoughts like you organize the things in your room. Make a list of thoughts and sort them into categories like fears, tasks, problems, dreams, and ideas. Then, you can figure out what to do about them.

One of the things I've learned in trying to cope with my feelings of anxiety and overwhelm is that simply writing down or sharing things can make a BIG difference. It sort of makes it tangible and easier to deal with. Now that it's written down you don't have to stress as much that you'll forget about it. And sometimes, the thought just wanted to be heard and you can say, I heard you, thank you but this is not something that needs my energy. Carmel also suggests writing down happy thoughts and things you are grateful for - this can help you realize that even when bad things seem to be piling up, there's always good in your life as well. 

One thing I wasn't expecting was for "Stressy Jessy" to touch my heart! Carmel uses the Hebrew word balagan which means mess. My mom, who passed away several years ago, used to use that word all the time when she was telling me to clean up my messes! I had completely forgotten about it! Reading that word brought her right back to me. Apparently balagan is not only used in Hebrew, but in various eastern European countries as well. My mom's family was from Ukraine so that makes sense! She used to also tell me I had a золота верба (zolota verba) growing behind me because I would randomly leave things all over - I knew золота meant golden but I never actually knew what a верба was! According to Google, it's a willow. But now, with the help of Stressy Jessy's strategies, I have more confidence that I can tackle my mental and physical balagan and prune that golden willow! 

I hope this book finds its way to all those, young and old alike, who need a little help settling their thoughts. And don't forget to check out these other awesome books that support mental and emotional health:

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  Makeup artist, mom, and author Lauren Vena is back at it with her second book, "My Dad...the Best Dad Ever." This book celebrat...

'My Dad...the Best Dad Ever' Book Review and Father's Day Drawing Page

 


Makeup artist, mom, and author Lauren Vena is back at it with her second book, "My Dad...the Best Dad Ever." This book celebrates the endearing and sometimes weird imperfections of dads that make them so lovable and super to their kids.

Like I said about moms in my review of "My Mom...the Best Mom Ever," the roles and expectations for fathers have also changed through the generations. While the norm years ago was fathers earn the money and mothers raise the children, now I see the roles more blurred a lot of the time. And I think it's awesome! While I haven't met any stay-at-home dads in my little circle yet, we do know tons of families where both parents work and both share the job of raising their children. 

Just like us moms, all those dads out there haven't figured out how to be perfect parents (and they never will!) but on the whole they are much more involved in their kids' day to day lives than generations before. But we all know it doesn't matter exactly what you do or don't do, when you truly love your children they know it and that will make you the best dad ever in their eyes. Here's some proof:

Why is your Dad the best dad ever?

"He makes the best pierogis and makes us multiplayers [servers]." - Lil C, 10

"He plays games with me like Minecraft Dungeons and other video games, Nerf wars, tag, and hide and seek. And he's better at putting maple syrup on pancakes!" - Squidgy, 6

"I think Daddy is really cool. I love Daddy's really stupid funny dad jokes. I like all the cool creative things I do with him. I like when I went to Home Depot and Target with Daddy. I got to listen to Encanto and Hamilton the whole car ride." - Chloe, 12

"I like asking him cool science questions. I also loved going to Sonic 2 with Daddy in NYC. I also like throwing footballs or basketballs with Daddy." - Ben, 6

"He likes to play with us, like board games, wrestling, nerf, and video games." - Logan, 10

"He lets us have dessert and buys us ice cream." - Alice, 6


Activity: Tell your Dad what makes him the best dad ever! Download and print the Best Dad Ever Drawing Page then fill it out and give it to your Dad on Father's Day! And if your child would like their drawing featured on the Cardboard Mom Facebook page, please scan and email their drawing to cardboardmom@gmail.com with their first name/nickname and age.


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"We Are Water Protectors" by Carole Lindstrom and Michaela Goade is an absolutely beautiful story illustrating the Native American...

'We Are Water Protectors' - Read and Rise


"We Are Water Protectors" by Carole Lindstrom and Michaela Goade is an absolutely beautiful story illustrating the Native American - especially Ojibwe - love of and relationship with water as well as their protest to protect the waters on their land from oil contamination.

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Chinese-American author Kat Zhang has 3 different Amy Wu books , but since I'm a total sucker for children's books that involve food...

'Amy Wu and the Perfect Bao' - Read and Rise May 2022



Chinese-American author Kat Zhang has 3 different Amy Wu books, but since I'm a total sucker for children's books that involve food, I had to feature "Amy Wu and the Perfect Bao!" The story chronicles little Amy Wu's struggles as she attempts to make the perfect bao like her mother, father, and grandmother. 

Before I continue, I feel like I should clarify what bao are for those who don't know. Bao (pronounced bow as in, "She bowed before the princess") are amazingly delicious steamed buns. We get them all the time from the Asian market in town. They come in a variety of sizes with all sorts of fillings. We've had ones filled with various meats, vegetables, red bean, and custard. The kids' favorite is one called a Phoenix bun, which is filled with a sweet runny eggy custard.


Ok, now I can get back to the story. So Amy tries over and over and over to make the perfect bao but they're just not coming out right! Can she figure out the secret to making the perfect bao her own way? Watch the read aloud below and find out!

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While it is actually a chilly rainy windy day here, it's May and we're all thinking about warm weather and pools and...ice cream! To...

'The Boy Who Invented the Popsicle' - Read and Rise May 2022


While it is actually a chilly rainy windy day here, it's May and we're all thinking about warm weather and pools and...ice cream! Today's story takes us back over 100 years to the time 11 year old Frank Epperson accidently invented the popsicle!

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  I'm very excited to share my second Global Explorers GET'EM mystery with you all! I originally planned to have one ready last mont...

Global Explorers GET'EM Mystery - Ukraine

 


I'm very excited to share my second Global Explorers GET'EM mystery with you all! I originally planned to have one ready last month but I ran into trouble when I tried to do too much. I was right in thinking creating the mystery this time around would go much more smoothly than with Korea. However, wanting to also add in a full meal menu proved to be a little crazy trying to test out recipes while doing everything else! (There were also various other ideas popping into my head distracting me...) So I've realized I should focus on one thing I want to do and if I end up with extra time I can add more. Since my kids like the mysteries the best, that's going to be my first focus!

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In honor of Earth Day, we're going on a nature hunt today! "We're Going on a Nature Hunt" by Steve Metzger and Miki Sakamo...

'We're Going on a Nature Hunt' - Read and Rise April 2022


In honor of Earth Day, we're going on a nature hunt today! "We're Going on a Nature Hunt" by Steve Metzger and Miki Sakamoto is an adorable book that I used to read all the time with my preschoolers and then with Lil C and Squidgy! And it's the perfect book to read before you head outside on your own nature hunt!

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  Easter is one week away and so it is the perfect time to read "The Birds' Gift: A Ukrainian Easter Story" by Eric Kimmel and...

'The Birds' Gift' - Read and Rise April 2022

 

Easter is one week away and so it is the perfect time to read "The Birds' Gift: A Ukrainian Easter Story" by Eric Kimmel and Katya Krenina. This story is a folktale explaining the origin of the beautiful Ukrainian Easter eggs, pysanky. In the tale, winter comes early and a flock of golden birds nearly freezes in the snow until a little girl discovers them and recruits help to rescue them. The entire village shelters the birds in their houses and church all winter. Then on Easter, the villagers are astonished to find beautifully decorated eggs everywhere - it is a gift from the birds! Ever since that spring, people have made pysanky to honor the birds' gift.

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  Unless you're new to this blog, you know that I love making holiday themed foods for my kids. So for St. Patrick's Day we love gre...

All Natural Shamrock Smoothie and Smoothie Bowl

 


Unless you're new to this blog, you know that I love making holiday themed foods for my kids. So for St. Patrick's Day we love green foods! But since I also try to make pretty healthy recipes most of the time, we turn everything green naturally! 

Today I have a healthy remake of the Shamrock Shake without any vanilla ice cream or food coloring. And while my kids would probably enjoy the ice cream version, they love this one enough that I've never made them the sugar-loaded one.

I have two versions of the recipe for you today, a regular smoothie and a thicker version for smoothie bowls. Try them both ways, either way it'll be delicious!

Shamrock Smoothie
Makes 2 small and 1 large glass of smoothie

In the pitcher of a high powered blender combine 1 cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk, 1 frozen banana, 1/2 cup frozen mango, 2 cups baby spinach, and 10 fresh mint leaves*. Pour into glasses and top with whipped cream and gold sprinkles if you want to be a little extra festive!

*Since there are always way more than 10 mint leaves in the bunch you buy from the store, I freeze the extra. Simply give 10 leaves a rough chop before tossing them into the cup in an ice cube tray then fill with water. Repeat with however many mint leaves you have. Once they're frozen, I keep the cubes in a bag in the freezer and if I want to make the Shamrock Smoothie I can just throw one cube into the blender with everything else!



Shamrock Smoothie Bowl

In the bowl of a food processor combine 1/2-2/3 cup vanilla Greek yogurt (I use Oikos triple zero), 1/4 cup water, 1 frozen banana, 1 cup frozen mango, 2 cups baby spinach, and 10 fresh mint leaves. Blend until smooth.

We topped ours with chia seeds, chopped cashews, gold coin sprinkles, and mini chocolate chips.

Note: If your kids - or you - want it extra smooth without any tiny bits of spinach, blend the liquid and spinach by themselves before adding everything else. That will help it have a more uniform look.


For another delicious green recipe, check out Naturally Green Spinach Crepes.

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  In honor of International Day of Women and Girls in Science this year, we got a big stack of picture books about female scientists from th...

'The Leaf Detective' - Read and Rise March 2020

 


In honor of International Day of Women and Girls in Science this year, we got a big stack of picture books about female scientists from the library. Out 14 amazing women, I had only heard of 2 of them! One of the new scientists I was introduced to was Dr. Meg Lowman. Her story is amazing! She was the first person to actually climb up into the rainforest canopy to study wildlife and helped create canopy walkways so more people could study and experience the wonder of the canopy!

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  We picked up a bunch of books about amazing female scientists from the library last month and have been slowly reading through them and do...

'Joan Procter, Dragon Doctor' - Read and Rise March 2022

 


We picked up a bunch of books about amazing female scientists from the library last month and have been slowly reading through them and doing extension activities. This is the first of many I will be sharing!

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  I'm very excited about today's post because not only do I get to share a wonderful story with you, but I also have an interview wi...

'The Rescuer of Tiny Creatures' and a Super STEM Spotlight

 


I'm very excited about today's post because not only do I get to share a wonderful story with you, but I also have an interview with an amazing female in STEM to share as well! Let's check out the book first and then you can meet Ms. Valente!

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  Today is the last day of Chinese New Year, the day of the Lantern Festival! We've finished reading "Celebrating Chinese New Year&...

Chinese New Year Mini Unit Day 3 with 'Celebrating Chinese New Year'

 


Today is the last day of Chinese New Year, the day of the Lantern Festival! We've finished reading "Celebrating Chinese New Year" by Eugenia Chu and Javiera Mac-lean and used it for inspiration to end this 15 day celebration with a bang!

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We made paper bag dragon puppets for the Dragon Dance. The dragon printouts we used came from Pink Stripey Socks


We also made some paper lanterns to decorate our school area even more. Lil C turned her lantern into a tiger lantern - I think it came out adorable!



After reading the "Around the World" section and finding out they have dragon boat races in Sydney, Australia, we just had to make a dragon boat! The benefit of having a GIANT Lego collection is you can build a dragon boat without needing to buy the set! Thank you Lego for having downloadable building instructions!


I don't know if we have enough specialty pieces to build another one, but we at least got one dragon boat! I love it and think it's so fun and the kids think it's hysterical that there's a croissant as the dragon's nose!

It is VERY cold here today, but if we're brave enough we'll go out on the patio under the full moon tonight and light a couple of sparklers!

I want to send Eugenia Chu another HUGE thank you for sharing her awesome book, "Celebrating Chinese New Year: History, Traditions, and Activities" with us. We loved learning all about the holiday and the different ways people celebrate in China and across the world!

Check out the rest of our Chinese New Year fun!

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My kids are super into mysteries and anything involving escape-room like puzzles. So I decided to make them work for their Valentine's t...

Valentine Treasure Hunt

My kids are super into mysteries and anything involving escape-room like puzzles. So I decided to make them work for their Valentine's treats!

To start, I left a red envelope on the kitchen counter. But instead of finding a Valentine card, they discovered this letter. 


Lil C realized right away that some of the letters were underlined so she grabbed a pencil and began writing down everything that was underlined. The underlined letters spell "intheclosete2" or "in the closet e2." The e2 doesn't make much sense now, but it will soon. In hindsight, when 2 letters next to each other were both underlined it was easy to miss a letter. Next time I might capitalize the letters instead of underlining.

Anyway, so they went searching closets. Eventually they found this hanging inside the door of one of the closets.


This is where the "e2" comes in. You have to spin the inner wheel until the 2 lines up with the letter E. Then you can figure out the message below: DUPLOS.



Inside the box of Duplos, the kids found a magnifying glass and a small piece of paper with pictures on it.


After close inspection, Lil C and Squidgy eventually realized that there were pink ovals around all the teddy bears. So they ran off to search through their immense collection of stuffed animals.



There was a piece of paper tucked behind a teddy bear in Squidgy's closet. And if you look closely, you'll see the end of a spy pen sticking out next to the pelican's head. The paper appeared blank, but Lil C quickly caught on that there was probably an invisible message on it! And she was right!


My drawing leaves a little to be desired, but after debating if they were stockings, socks, or boots, they agreed that boots sounded like the most likely option. So off they ran to find some boots.



Near the front door were several pairs of shoes, including a pair of my boots. Inside Lil C found a key with a note attached. Only the note was a little hard to read...


Lil C realized it was backwards and luckily we have mirrored closet doors ALL over the house so she didn't have to go far to find a mirror.




On the kitchen table they found this piece of paper and a bowl of M&Ms. Squidgy tried to eat the M&Ms but Lil C made him stop because she realized the number of M&Ms must be key to cracking this clue. They counted 12 orange M&Ms, 15 yellow M&Ms, and 14 red M&Ms which spelled out "BED." Back upstairs we go! But whose bed is it??


Hmm...there's a suitcase on Mommy and Daddy's bed. And it's locked! Where's that key?



Finally! Success and Valentine treasures!

To set up your own Valentine treasure hunt, grab the printables here:

In addition to the printables you will need: a magnifying glass, spy pen, white paper with drawing of boots in invisible ink (if you don't have a spy pen you can always use a white crayon and leave some watercolors nearby), colored candies, a small lock with a key, and something to be locked like a suitcase. Happy hunting!



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I never made a big deal out of Valentine's Day...until I had kids. Kids seriously bring new meaning to every holiday - even the random s...

Valentine's Breakfast Ideas with Berry Sauce and Pink Smoothie Bowl Recipes


I never made a big deal out of Valentine's Day...until I had kids. Kids seriously bring new meaning to every holiday - even the random silly ones like ice cream for breakfast day and silly sock day! It's become a tradition now that every year I make some fun Valentine-themed meals for everyone. 

Above you can see our I<3U breakfasts - sliced strawberries, heart shaped pancakes, and bacon or sausage U's. 



This year I made heart shaped cinnamon rolls - Squidgy actually asked me a few days ago if I could make bloody guts again so I figured I'd give the cinnamon rolls a Valentine twist instead. To make the hearts you unroll the bun halfway, then coil the loose end. Try to pinch the bottoms to get a sharp point because the rolls have a habit of curving in while they bake.



I served the heart rolls with bacon (that I attempted to shape into hearts!) and berry sauce. The berry sauce is super easy to make - all recipes are at the end of this post. 



If you want something a little more on the healthy side, this pink smoothie bowl is for you! Full of delicious fruits, it's naturally sweet and beautiful! Scroll down for the recipe.


Easy Berry Sauce
Place 3 cups frozen berries* in a saucepan over medium-low heat. Cover and heat 5-10 minutes until the berries are thawed and softened. Mash the berries lightly. Add 2 tablespoons of sugar and 1 teaspoon of cornstarch and stir together. Bring to boil, simmer 1 minute, then turn off the heat. Add in a tiny splash of lemon juice and give it a final stir before pouring on top of your cinnamon rolls, pancakes, waffles, or French toast!

*Note: you can use a single type of berry or a mix.


Pretty in Pink Smoothie Bowl
In a food processor, combine the following:

- 2 frozen bananas, broken into chunks (if you want a thinner smoothie base, use 1 1/2 bananas - as is, this recipe has the consistency of ice cream)
- 1 cup raspberries
- 1/3 cup blueberries
- 1/4 cup walnuts
- 1-2 tablespoons maple syrup (optional)
- 1/2 cup milk
- topping ideas: chia seeds, shredded coconuts, mini chocolate chips, nut butter

Blend until everything you have a smooth uniform consistency. Top as desired.

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  I'm very excited to finally be able to share with you my new format for the Global Explorers series! After testing this summer's o...

Global Explorers Family Dinner Adventure - Korea

 


I'm very excited to finally be able to share with you my new format for the Global Explorers series! After testing this summer's original format at home, I found the activity books were a little hit or miss with my kids. Sometimes they were interested and did some of the activities and other times they looked at the postcard and booklet and just left it off to the side. So I started brainstorming ways to make it a little more fun and exciting and ideally involve the whole family. That's when the idea for a family dinner emerged. I thought providing an idea or two for a full meal menu along with some fun fact conversation cards and an activity placemat would make for a more complete experience. But then, I had another brain spark...

My kids are SUPER into mystery books and they've enjoyed mystery puzzle games like Carmen Sandiego and Highlights Top Secret Adventures. They also had a lot of fun when I created a Wild Kratts-Carmen Sandiego hunt across Africa last year to introduce our African savannah unit study. I thought, what would be more fun than a themed dinner followed by crime mystery to solve! And so began the task of creating such a game...

Let me just say that it took a lot more time to prepare than I was expecting. I had to come up with a crime. I had to research various locations in Korea. I had to create a guide booklet with information about each location. The plan was to use the format of the Carmen Sandiego games and have the players follow the thief from place to place until they were caught and the stolen item was recovered. But I wanted it more fun and interactive than just reading clues about the next destination. So I had to come up with clues AND puzzles about the locations and clues about the thief. Then I had to figure out how to make the puzzles as easy to set up as possible without needing specialized items. That meant creating a lot of printables. Then I had to print everything out, set it up, and test the game. Daddy and the kids were more than happy to test it out for me and provide feedback on what needed a little tweaking. And after the test run I realized I needed to provide very detailed instructions on how to set up and guide the game. BUT...it is finally ready to share AND I learned a lot during the process and I'm confident the next go around will go much smoother and quicker. So, without further ado, here is everything you need to have your own Korean Family Dinner Adventure!!

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We continued with our Chinese New Year mini unit study today, reading the section on how people prepare for the Lunar New Year and common fo...

Chinese New Year Mini Unit Day 2 with 'Celebrating Chinese New Year'

We continued with our Chinese New Year mini unit study today, reading the section on how people prepare for the Lunar New Year and common foods that are made in "Celebrating Chinese New Year" by Eugenia Chu. 


This post contains affiliate links. As an Amazon Associate, I may earn a commission on qualifying purchases - at zero cost to you.

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  When author Eugenia Chu sent me a copy of her new book, "Celebrating Chinese New Year" I knew it would be the perfect base for ...

Chinese New Year Mini Unit Day 1 with 'Celebrating Chinese New Year'

 


When author Eugenia Chu sent me a copy of her new book, "Celebrating Chinese New Year" I knew it would be the perfect base for a mini unit on Chinese New Year! This is an all inclusive guide to Chinese New Year - it includes history, background, legends, and an introduction to common traditions and foods. At the end of the book, Eugenia also includes a bunch of activities like making your own paper lanterns, dragon puppets, as well as her mother's famous jiăozi recipe!

This post contains affiliate links. As an Amazon Associate, I may earn a commission on qualifying purchases - at zero cost to you.

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  I was very excited to receive a free copy of  "Juana and Lucas: Muchos Changes"  by Juana Medina from Candlewick Press to review...

'Juana and Lucas: Muchos Changes' Book Review - Multicultural Children's Book Day

 


I was very excited to receive a free copy of "Juana and Lucas: Muchos Changes" by Juana Medina from Candlewick Press to review for Multicultural Children's Book Day. I love books that sprinkle in non-English words and couldn't wait to find out what changes were in store for Juana (although, the cover did give me a clue that there was probably a baby involed!) "Juana and Lucas: Muchos Changes" is an easy chapter book (with pictures on every page) and is the third book in the Juana and Lucas series by Juana Medina. I was thrilled to discover my library carries the series so we can go back and read the first two books as well! But back to this book.


Juana and her perrito, Lucas, live in Bogota, Columbia. (Of course, that made me want to learn more about Columbia - Global Explorers trip anyone??) We soon learn that Juana's Mami recently got remarried and they are all adjusting to life together in a new house. Juana is getting more comfortable with the situation but then Mami springs another surprise on her - she's going to have a baby! Juana is not thrilled. And then she becomes even LESS thrilled when she learns that Mami signed her up for skating camp during school break when Juana was looking forward to relaxing and having fun swimming, reading, visiting her abuelos, and having sleepovers. How is she going to handle this??


Juana resists going to skating camp, but Mami insists she give it at least 5 tries. I might have to try this strategy! Squidgy is more resistant than Lil C to trying new unfamiliar things, but maybe giving him a clear ending point where he has the choice whether to stop or continue will help. As the story goes on, Juana tackles some more changes, like taking on more responsibility when Mami gets put on bedrest, having to stay with her abuelos while Mami is in the hospital, and having to wait to touch and hold her new baby sister because she is born prematurely.


This book touches on so many topics I think every kid can feel a comradery with Juana - getting a stepdad, becoming a big sibling, trying a new camp, making new friends, feeling like the odd one out, coping with Mami being on bedrest, and having a baby born prematurely. It's such a great look into how change affects children - they need communication, information, support, time, and encouragement! This is a great reminder for us as parents so we can help our children through the changes. Just keep in mind that it won't always go perfectly. When we moved a few years back, we tried to do all this and make it exciting by looking at all the positives we'd gain from the move, but Lil C still had a breakdown when we officially moved out of our old house. There were a lot of tears and hugs. But now we're all so happy in our new bigger house, with a bedroom for everyone, a great school area, and large backyard with lots of trees, animals, and a hill for sledding! 

Like we discovered with our new house, change can be scary and uncomfortable and unwelcome, but often, change can be really wonderful. It can often just take a few (or five!) tries to realize something new is actually fantásticas!



My challenge to all of you is, try something new this week! It can be something tiny like a new food, book, or movie, or something bigger like a new activity, class, or talking to a new person! Give it a try and see what happens!

Check out my other MCBD 2022 review: "Sissy Goes Tiny"


Multicultural Children’s Book Day 2022 (1/28/22) is in its 9th year! This non-profit children’s literacy initiative was founded by Valarie Budayr and Mia Wenjen; two diverse book-loving moms who saw a need to shine the spotlight on all of the multicultural books and authors on the market while also working to get those books into the hands of young readers and educators.

MCBD’s mission is to raise awareness of the ongoing need to include kids’ books that celebrate diversity in homes and school bookshelves. Read about our Mission & History HERE.

MCBD 2022 is honored to be Supported by these Medallion Sponsors!

SUPER PLATINUM: Make A Way Media

PLATINUM: Language Lizard

GOLD: Barefoot Books, KidLitTV, Candlewick, Capstone, Abrams Books

SILVER: Pack-n-Go Girls, Charlotte Riggle, Kimberly Gordon Biddle  

BRONZE: Carole P. Roman, Patrice McLaurin, Dyesha and Triesha McCants/McCants Squared, Redfin.com, Redfin Canada, Redfin Mortgage, Redfin/Title Forward, Create & Educate, Star Bright Books, Vivian Kirkfield, Dr. Eleanor Wint, Kind World Publishing, Snowflake Stories, Lisa Wee, SONGJU MA, Melissa Stoller, J.C. Kato and J.C.², Crystel Patterson, Audrey Press, Pragmaticmom, TimTimTom, Wisdom Tales 

MCBD 2022 is honored to be Supported by these Author Sponsors!

Charlene Mosley (official MCBD2022 Poster Creator)
Illustrator Isabelle Roxas (Class Kit Poster Creator)

Alva Sachs, Brianna Carter, Ebony Zay Zay, Rita Bhandari, Gwen Jackson, Lois Petren/The 5 Enchanted Mermaids, Valerie Williams-Sanchez and Valorena Publishing, Josh Funk, Afsaneh Moradian, Eugenia Chu, Maritza Martínez Mejía, Diana Huang, Kathleen Burkinshaw, CultureGroove, Sandra Elaine Scott, Dorena Williamson, Veronica Appleton, Alejandra Domenzain, Lauren Muskovitz and Sandfish Publishing, Tonya Duncan Ellis, Kimberly Lee, Susan Schaefer Bernardo & Illustrator Courtenay Fletcher, Nancy Tupper Ling, Winsome Hudson-Bingham, Amanda Hsiung-Blodgett, Sivan Hong, Michael Genhart, Debbie Dadey, Elizabeth Cureton, Stephanie Wildman, Maryann Jacob, Sherri Maret, Rochelle Melander, Dia Mixon, Kiyanda and Benjamin Young, Shereen Rahming, Linda Thornburg and Katherine Archer,  Rebecca Flansburg and BA Norrgard , Maxine Schur  Natalie McDonald-Perkins

MCBD 2022 is Honored to be Supported by our CoHosts and Global CoHosts!

MCBD 2022 is Honored to be Supported by these Media Partners!

Check out MCBD's Multicultural Books for Kids Pinterest Board!

FREE RESOURCES from Multicultural Children’s Book Day

Diversity Book Lists & Activities for Teachers and Parents

Homeschool Diverse Kidlit Booklist & Activity Kit

FREE Teacher Classroom Activism and Activists Kit

FREE Teacher Classroom Empathy Kit

FREE Teacher Classroom Kindness Kit

FREE Teacher Classroom Physical and Developmental Challenges Kit

FREE Teacher Classroom Poverty Kit

FREE Homeschool Diverse Kidlit Booklist & Activity Kit

FREE Teacher Classroom Raising Awareness on Systemic Racism in America Classroom Kit

Gallery of Our Free Posters

FREE Diversity Book for Classrooms Program

Join us on Friday, Jan 29, 2021, at 9 pm EST for the 8th annual Multicultural Children's Book Day Twitter Party! Be sure and follow MCBD and Make A Way Media on Twitter!

This epically fun and fast-paced hour includes multicultural book discussions, addressing timely issues, diverse book recommendations, & reading ideas.

We will be giving away an 8-Book Bundle every 5 minutes plus Bonus Prizes as well! *** US and Global participants welcome. **

Follow the hashtag #ReadYourWorld to join the conversation, connect with like-minded parts, authors, publishers, educators, organizations, and librarians. See you all very soon on Twitter!

Hashtag: Don’t forget to connect with us on social media and be sure and look for/use our official hashtag #ReadYourWorld.

1 comments:

  I am super excited to be a part of Multicultural Children's Book Day for the second year! Communicating with author Eugenia Chu on he...

'Sissy Goes Tiny' Book Review - Multicultural Children's Book Day

 


I am super excited to be a part of Multicultural Children's Book Day for the second year! Communicating with author Eugenia Chu on her book "Brandon Makes Jiao Zi" for last year's MCBD was just the start of so many more author collaborations and friendships! Not to mention a lot of awesome new books to review and share. 

This post contains affiliate links. As an Amazon Associate, I may earn a commission on qualifying purchases - at zero cost to you.

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  When author John C. Stickler reached out to me to share his and his wife's book, "Maya and the Turtle: A Korean Fairy Tale,"...

'Maya and the Turtle' and 'Land of Morning Calm' Book Review

 


When author John C. Stickler reached out to me to share his and his wife's book, "Maya and the Turtle: A Korean Fairy Tale," it planted the seeds of heading to Korea for our next Global Explorers destination. And when I mentioned the idea and he sent me "Land of Morning Calm: Korean Culture Then and Now" as well, I KNEW Korea would be our next destination! So while I finish putting together all the activities and resources for our "trip," here's a glimpse at these two amazing books.

"Maya and the Turtle" is a Korean fairytale written by Soma Han and her husband, John C. Stickler. It tells the story of Maya, a girl who finds a little turtle all alone one day and brings it home to care for it and keep it safe. Many years later, when Maya offers to sacrifice herself to a monstrous centipede in exchange for money to help her ill father, the turtle - who has now grown to an enormous size - in turn sacrifices itself to save Maya. It is a tale of family, love, selflessness, sacrifice, and destiny. The tale was told to Soma by her mother who was told the story by her mother growing up in a small village in Korea. With John's help, Soma translated the tale into English and paired it with her own beautiful watercolor images (seriously, they are amazing!). The story is very well told, something that I know is not always easy to do when you are translating from one language to another. I may have never heard the story told in Korean, but I imagine that this version maintains the essence of the original tale. The new audiobook version is wonderful to listen to as well.

I grew up hearing variations on fairytales by Hans Christian Anderson and the Brothers Grimm in addition to a couple Ukrainian fairytales my mom would tell us. Now, I find it so interesting to read folktales from around the world - it's so fascinating to find strings of commonality in tales told on opposite sides of the country! I've actually just discovered Grace Lin's novels based on Chinese folktales and "Maya and the Turtle" reminded me very much of tales of monstrous magical creatures in Lin's novels. 



"Land of Morning Calm" contains the same beautiful illustrations by Soma Han and delves deep into Korean Culture. I would recommend this book for older elementary students as it really goes into detail about various aspects of Korean culture including dress, food, language, celebrations, and the flag. The book also incorporates various legends and folktales which simply add to the book's charm. If you want a taste of Korean culture, I highly recommend this book. It can be used with younger children, but I would plan on reading only a few pages at a time and mixing it with hands-on activities to maintain their interest. 

Please come back next week for a Global Explorers trip to Korea!


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