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International Mud Day

What better excuse to get down and dirty than International Mud Day?! Lucky for me, this year our annual Cousins Camp coincided with this fabulous international holiday. Conceived and promoted by the World Forum Foundation, and celebrated this year on June 29th, International Mud Day is the quintessential unplugged experience.

Seriously, when was the [...]

Playing without plastic

I am always a fan of “unplugged” play, so on Sunday when I saw that a local historical site was offering a free event for children – featuring games and toys from the Revolutionary War era, I packed up my boys and a couple of their cousins to check it out. It was a [...]

How Screen-Free Can You Be?

One of the nicest things about Screen-Free Week is how the week has turned into a week-and-a-half, at least to some extent, in that I haven’t resumed all my screen-time habits yet. As predicted, Screen-Free Week was much harder for me than it was for our sons, being that they are already [...]

Empowered by Play endorses Screen-Free Week!

How hard would it be for your family to forgo screen entertainment for one week? That includes video games, television, social media and texting – the whole kit-and-caboodle. Have you ever tried it? Maybe the electricity went out for a day or two from an ice-storm (that happened in our area last winter) and [...]

Radical Preschool

As young children across the country start a new school year, and teachers across the country set up learning environments for their young students, many early childhood teachers will look to the HighScope Educational Research Foundation for guidance.  HighScope is a well-respected, research based approach to early childhood care and education.  The well-known Perry Preschool [...]

The beautiful blur of work and play

“Let’s see what happens if I do this,” my son said as he played with his twin brother in the sand. We were at the ocean, and the boys were constructing a track for a tennis ball they’d found the night before. We first spied the tennis ball bobbing in the waves as high tide [...]

Fun for All Ages

“Fun for all ages” is a wonderful concept. When thinking about imaginative play, and life in general, you know you have a hit when a wide range of ages can be equally engaged. Last week, our family held the second annual “Cousin’s Camp” for our upcoming generation. We had 15 campers ranging in age from [...]

You can help protect preschoolers from too much screen-time!

I am in the joyful and exhausting throes of “Cousins’ Camp” (this year we have 15 first cousins, ages 4-13!) and don’t have time for a long post.  But I felt compelled to let everyone know about an important window of opportunity to advocate for our youngest children. Currently NAEYC (National Association for the Education [...]

Strawberries, snakes and swings

It feels like summer is already here. This weekend our family enjoyed many moments outdoors – for me this is the best antidote to screen-time. At least two snakes were spotted – slithering among rocks at our house and at friends’. Awesome. The first yummy strawberries ripened in our little garden, and the boys delighted [...]

Small moments

Last night after dinner, my sons begged and begged to watch a DVD. We don’t have television, and we have a “No DVD on school nights” rule.  I stood firm and upheld the rule. Oh, my goodness, were there tears.  “It’s okay,” I said.  “You can be sad.”  One son, looking outside and seeing the [...]