Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Review + Giveaway: Peapod: Squeeze to Focus, Hug to Calm

Have you been wondering what it is like to go inside of an Abilitations Peapod?  We will tell you everything we know.
WHAT: Peapod (MEDIUM) by Abilitations
DOES:  envelop your child with indescribably comfortable pressure.  Helps them do certain tasks independently like.... READING... (and playing video games.. oh wait, they don't need so much help with that)
INVEST:  $89.99
AGES: This (pictured) is the medium that is well suited for 2nd and 3rd graders.  If you have a third grader, I'd say to go for the XL. If you have two kids, go for the XL.  The Peapod Jr fits PreK - 1st grade.
TOOLS: Family Fix-its, I Can Take Care of Myself, My Body Needs to Move
EXPERT OPINION: Pediatric Occupational Therapist Susan L. Roberts, MDiv, OTR/L
GIVEAWAY:  Win your OWN Peapod!!! Shipped FREE to your home!

Monday, April 29, 2013

DSM-V Propelled RE-Review : Bubble Talk: Perspective-Taking Can Be Hilariously Helpful

What would be a good caption for this?  Better yet, what would your friend think? 

NEWS: The DSM-V is coming! The DSM-V is coming! Quick, it's time to update your TOOLBOX!  Have you heard of "Social Communication Disorder"???  What's that? You think your boss has it?   Your spouse maybe?  Wait... let's be serious for one minute and talk about a very hilariously helpful game.

WHAT:  Bubble Talk Game  by Technosource
Encourages you to think about what would please someone else using outrageous humor and a little reading
TOOLS:  Lose and Win Gracefully, Fertilize Responsibility and Courtesy, Foment the Love of Language

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Review and Giveaway: Crazy Aaron's Thinking Putty Hypercolors: Change Is Definitely Good

Bluebird's Nest by Number 2 using Twilight and Sunburst Hypercolor Putty by Crazy Aaron's PuttyWorld

WHAT:  Heat Sensitive Hypercolor Putty by Crazy Aaron's Thinking Putty
DOES: fidget to focus, fidget to wake up your creativity, fidget and be social, fidget and make art, fidget and feel alive!!!
INVEST:  $11 MSRP (3.2 oz tin)
AGES: 3+  (I could do 2+ but only with supervision)
TOOLS: Family Fix-its, Holiday/Birthday Build-Uponner, Social Scene Helper, Think Like a Scientist/Engineer
EXPERT OPINION: Pediatric Occupational Therapist Susan L. Roberts, MDiv, OTR/L
GIVEAWAY and DISCOUNT CODE:  Win a tin of Glow-in-the-Dark Putty and one Heat Sensitive Hypercolor Putty too!  U.S. addresses only please...   See Discount Code info below.

Because you're HOT then you're COLD, it's YES then it's NO..... Hypercolor putty kind of acts like a person

Monday, April 22, 2013

Review and Giveaway: SolPals Moonbeams Flower or Star: Make Every Night "Earth Night"

Why can't we celebrate "Earth Night" too? This is our new night light.  It's a hybrid that uses sunlight for power but has a back-up for the cloudy days. 

SolPals (
solar-powered hybrid utility light/night light) Moonbeams Flower (or Star)
DOES: teaches kids how solar power can help conserve energy and increase safety at home; acts as emergency light
INVEST:  $29.95  (Moonbeams Mini-Projector is $19.95)  Additional Projector Lens can be purchased separately
AGES:1 minute old and up (because you can't be age Zero)
TOOLS: Family Fix-its, Fertilize Responsibility and Courtesy, Think Like a Scientist/Engineer
GIVEAWAY:  Win your own Moonbeam Mini-Projector! You choose the color! (U.S. Only please)

Friday, April 19, 2013

Small Yellow Campaign + Giveaway: Meet the Brick Artist: Nathan Sawaya

From Jenn to You: You must vote for Small Yellow on Cuusoo by the artist Nathan Sawaya.  You just simply have to... Photo courtesy of brickartist.com

WHAT: Vote for Small Yellow- created by Nathan Sawaya
DOES: Step 1 in my Campaign to Rescue Creativity
INVEST:  $ Your Time
GIVEAWAY: Everyone will get free units of happiness and hope- if you participate, you will get it instantly. If you send it to a friend, you'll get even more units.
AND... Win your own AUTOGRAPHED COPY of the book that is quickly disappearing off bookstore shelves all over the world...  The Art of Nathan Sawaya

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Review + Giveaway: Meet Super Duper Pubs: An Educational Trailblazer

The back of the card is even better than the front!  Yogarilla is a superstar!

WHAT: 500 Prefixes, Suffixes, and Stems Super Fun Deck and Yogarilla (both from Super Duper Publications)
DOES: 500 Prefixes, Suffixes, and Stems is a treasure chest of word parts that your child can use to help with both decoding and reading comprehension; Yogarilla is an excellently designed tool that helps you and your child do yoga positions in an accurate and fun way. 
INVEST:  $49.95 and $34.95 respectively
Fun Deck (Suggested Gr. 4+ but we loved at Gr. 3 too), Yogarilla (3+)
TOOLS: Foment Love of Language, My Body Needs to Move
EXPERT OPINION: Susan Schwartz, MAEd, Learning Specialist, Friends Seminary and Mike Pfeiffer, Pediatric Occupational Therapist, Owner/Director, Leaps and Bounds Pediatric Therapy
GIVEAWAY:  Win a fifty dollar gift certificate to this really amazing store filled with 100s of awesome tools.   COUPON CODE TOO

Monday, April 15, 2013

Making Machines Out of Paper and Sticks

This is what teaching looks like to me.  Coincidentally, this what learning looks like to me. You don't always see it in the same picture.  photo: Yadana Desmond where: New York Hall of Science

Reminder: National Teachers' Appreciation Week is coming soon.  May 6-12, 2013

Don't you love this photo?  Press LIKE if you want to salute your favorite teachers!  Read on to find out what you can't see in the photo:

Thursday, April 11, 2013

Review & Giveaway: Weird and Wacky Contraption Lab: The Art of Science

Use momentum and gravity to make the ball fall down this rube goldberg but  you must use humor to persevere frustration and unleash your creativity


WHAT: Weird and Wacky Contraption Lab
DOES: educational toy and rube goldberg that lets kids learn about gravity and developing your "tweaking" skills while you make something that entertains yourself and others
INVEST:  $39.99 MSRP
AGES: 8+ (our tester was slightly younger and did okay)
TOOLS: Think Like a Scientist/Engineer, My Body Needs to Move
GIVEAWAY:  Win your very own (U.S. addresses only please)

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

How Often Does This Happen to You? Lesson in Why Good Design is Crucial

Don't worry, you won't see me wearing sunglasses sitting on a toilet singing Psy's song.

WHAT: Quick video for kids
DOES: teaches children of all ages what good design does NOT look like, helps grown-ups understand why kids hate public toilet
INVEST:  $your time
AGES: all
TOOLS: Family Fix-it, Work Experience 

Saturday, April 6, 2013

Headscratcher: A Gifted Student Learns to Thrive with Dyslexia - Wall Street Journal - WSJ.com

I have been kind of bugged out after reading this article.

Here is a student who was taught how to read using different methods because she has dyslexia.  She went to the Windward School in White Plains and there she learned how to read. Now she's in a mainstream school and just got into a high school of her choice.

I think this is great and we still need to educate many about dyslexia, especially gifted children with learning disabilities.  (It's NOT an oxymoron!)

However, what I really want to know is... have we ever tested these teaching methods for dyslexic students on non-dyslexic children?  Would they NOT learn how to read?  If they would learn how to read... why aren't we using these methods?  And if we don't know the answer to this question... why haven't we found out.

Things that make you go hmmmmm........ 

A Gifted Student Learns to Thrive with Dyslexia - Wall Street Journal - WSJ.com

Thursday, April 4, 2013

Review + Giveaway: Curious Chef Knives Set: It's All About Respect

I know what you are thinking. And the answer is YES!  These are for kids and they're fabulous.  Take it from a kid whose parents were in the restaurant business for over forty years!!.

WHAT: Nylon Knife Set (of 3) by Curious Chef
DOES: kids can slice, dice, and chop!!! safely? yes!!!!!  These aren't like plastic disposable knives.  These babies can cut!  Could this be the key to unlocking appetites or be a sneaky fine motor/OT-ish exercise? You will just have to try it yourself.
INVEST:  $8.99 as listed on their website.  I paid a couple of dollars more for it at Amazon but it's worth it!
AGES: Hmmmm I think parents should decide.
TOOLS: Holiday Build-Uponner, Express Yourself, Fertilize Responsibility and Courtesy
GIVEAWAY:  Win your own set of knives (U.S. only please)

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

World Autism Awareness Day: Bestselling Book: Autism Goes to School is Free April 2nd

In honor of World Autism Awareness Day, Autism Goes to School by Dr. Sharon A. Mitchell is free on Amazon today.   Thanks Rachel for sharing this!

Here is my link!

Why Do Kids Like to Play With Eggs So Much?

WHAT: Belated Easter card from Number 2 to you
PRODUCTS PICTURED: Eggs White and Brown. Radz, Zometool, 24 Karat Easter Egg Coloring Kit
DOES: Makes me chuckle
TOOLS: None other than make me chuckle which I consider to be medicinal.

Monday, April 1, 2013

Review + Giveaway: eeBoo: Familiarity and Playfulness Go A Long Way

It's not a workbook.  It's not a textbook. It's a 32 page-teacher and the school is open whenever you want it to be.

WHAT: eeBoo's Learn to Draw by Lizzy Rockwell and Learn to Draw Animals by Kevin Hawkes
DOES: bookz that teach drawing and inspire thoughtful expression- look at the pictures- I have proof!
INVEST:  $5.99 each (seriously... it doesn't get any better than that)
AGES: 5+ and 7+ respectively- if your child is not used to drawing, then especially at those starter ages of 5 or 7 (depending) on the book, I suggest you sit with them for moral support.
TOOLS:  Express Yourself
EXPERT OPINION: Petra Pankow,  Manager of Tours and Gallery Interpretation, Montclair Art Museum and independent museum arts educator at various institutions (MoMA, Guggenheim)

GIVEAWAY:  Win the entire trio of eeBoo's drawing books, see below!