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Education

Child Development, Education, Gift Guides

Share your love of books this Valentine’s Day

Celebrating a day of love sharing a love of books with the little ones in your life? Absolutely! Books are an easy answer to filling in your love-themed gift basket, an alternative to plastic toys and candy, and won’t end up in the trash in a week. Just a few reasons we love books as gifts.

As a former early literacy program director and mom of four, I’ve hand-picked our absolute favorite board books and picture books for celebrating love and kindness with babies, toddlers, and little kids. Check them out below!

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Open-Ended Play
Child Development, Education

Sustainable Open-Ended Play Activities for Toddlers

Nurturing Sustainable Practices from the Start

As parents, we play a pivotal role in shaping our children’s lives. The early years are especially crucial, as they set the foundation for a child’s physical, cognitive, and emotional development. Integrating open-ended play activities into your toddler’s routine not only promotes their growth but also aligns with the values of sustainable and green parenting. In this article, we’ll explore open-ended play activities for toddlers that not only foster your child’s development but also contribute to a more eco-friendly future.

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Eco-Friendly Parenting
Child Development, Education

Eco-Friendly Toys: A Parent’s Guide to Greener Living

As parents, we want the best for our children, including toys that are safe, durable, and fun to play with. But have you ever thought about the impact that toys have on the environment? From the materials used to make them to the packaging they come in, toys can have a significant environmental impact. In this article, we’ll explore the benefits of eco-friendly toys and offer tips on how you can make more sustainable choices for your family.

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Open-Ended Play with Blocks
Education, Lifestyle

What is open-ended play?

Open-ended play refers to a type of play where there are no predetermined rules, fixed outcomes, or specific instructions. It is characterized by allowing children to explore and interact with objects, materials, or environments in a creative and unrestricted manner. During open-ended play, children use their imagination and problem-solving skills to come up with their own scenarios, stories, and activities.

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Child Development, Education

The Importance of Developing Language Skills in a One-Year-Old

As parents, we want to give our children the best possible start in life. One of the most important ways to do this is by helping them develop strong language skills. Children who have strong language and communication skills are more likely to succeed in school, have better relationships with others, and have better job prospects later in life. And you don’t need to be a language expert, child development pro, or find magical extra hours in the day to make a lasting impact. Parenting is hard we are here to help make it feel a little so with practical tips, advice, and mom-of-four-tested best practices and research for your real life.

So, how can we help a one-year-old develop strong language skills? In this post, we will go over the practical and easy-to-apply tips to get you started.

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Child Development, Education, Lifestyle

Kid-friendly and Low-Mess DIY Christmas Ornaments

If you are looking to ditch the glitter and ideas that require a PhD in crafting, we’ve got you covered with these quick and easy, DIY holiday Christmas ornaments. And a big bonus, they just so happen to have mostly eco-friendly materials and are super affordable.

As a former toddler and preschool teacher and current mom to four, I have a tree filled with dozens of handmade ornaments, and the trip down memory lane unpacking the handmade ornaments is just such a calming parenting treat amid the holiday chaos. So let’s get busy!

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Child Development, Education, Lifestyle

6 creative games to play with simple wooden blocks

A staple for generations, one of the first toys we all end up with for our kiddos are wooden blocks. At Marley & Moose, we consistently preach the value of imaginative and open-ended play. These simple toys are the perfect developmental learning tool to let your kiddo’s imagination and problem-solving skills run wild as well as support fine motor development and coordination. Fine motor skills are the well…building blocks for being able to write and draw down the line. No more dad jokes, okay no promises, but here are 6 kid-approved and super fun games to get the most out of your blocks.

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Child Development, Education, Lifestyle

How much screen time is OK for kids

One of the challenges most parents struggle with is how much screen time is appropriate for their kids. It is hard not to throw on the TV or let the little ones run wild on Minecraft so you have time to make dinner, do the dishes, or get some extra work done. As the kids age, how do you prevent your child from playing Fortnite when everyone at school is engaged together?

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Child Development, Education, Lifestyle

Screen time and child development

As a father of four, finding a balance of screen time usage in children is critically important and personal, and I’m not alone. According to a survey by Pew Research, 71% of parents are concerned that their child might spend too much time on screens. Lucky for me, my partner Brittany has a degree, as well as, significant experience in Early Childhood Development and Education, and I have a Computer Science and Engineering background. Brittany leads the charge with the kid’s development and I lead the charge in configuring the tech. Even still, the challenges persist as we are constantly asking questions and evaluating our approach.

How much screen time is too much? Does screen time cause ADHD? How do we prevent cyberbullying? How can we track what our kids are doing online? Can I prevent predators from communicating with my child? What the heck is Minecraft? My goodness, what does it all mean? There is so much information out there that it is hard to know where to start. Through our series of guides, we’ve broken down our research into consumable chunks of actionable information you can apply today. This guide is specifically about the child development aspects of screen time.

What does the research say? Continue reading for a collection of key points from several journals and studies on how screen time affects child development.

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