Eeboo Spanish and French Bingo – Giveaway day 5

For those of you who are just getting to know us, here’s a little background on our family.

I grew up in a small town in upstate New York, where cultural diversity wasn’t much, but language and culture caught my interest, big time. My mom was born in France, and I always felt “French American”, even though I wasn’t raised bilingually. I’ve studied language for my most of my life, am up to 4 languages in my repertoire, and teach English as a New Language to young language learners from around the world.

I love to travel, met my husband abroad (in Turkey) and we are now raising our family bilingually (English/Turkish).  My husband teaches in an international school here in New York City, and we’ve just enrolled my daughter there, and are thrilled to have her starting her own language study at age 3.

 

Essentially, language and culture work their way into every nook and cranny of our lives.

Naturally, we want to expose my daughter to additional languages early on, and I *really, really, really* believe in the power of play, and it’s positive impact on learning.

When I was looking around for a fun way to introduce children to an additional language, and a product to include in the giveaway, I came across Eeboo’s French and Spanish Bingo games, and here’s why I love them:

  1. I’ve always loved Eeboo’s products. There’s something about them that seems really special and distinct, and after taking a closer look at their catalog, there are about a million items on my wish list!
  2. They are beautiful. Both of the games have a distinctly sophisticated, vintage feel, with illustrations that really bridge a children’s game into something that is visually appealing for adults too.
  3. The cards are themed, so if you’re playing a modified matching game, or playing with just one child, you can focus on a single set of vocabulary words on a single theme (i.e. vehicles, food, clothing, colors, etc.).
  4. As an extension of # 3, the game is easily modified. Currently, Violet and I play a simple matching game. I gather all of the chips on a single theme, put them in the cloth bag, she pulls one out and matches it to the space on the card. The varying complexity of this game makes it one that will grow with your child.
  5. All around, the game really speaks to best practices in language learning and instruction: repetition, engagement, the fun factor, physical response, and thematic learning.
  6. The quality is exceptional, glossy cards and chips, thick cardboard — this game is a keeper, and something your child will enjoy for a long long time.

One lucky winner will #win both the French and Spanish Bingo games, as well as a bundle of other prizes to help your family bring the world into your home. Enter the giveaway here!

*I was provided with a copy of the Spanish and French Bingo games in exchange for a review. All opinions in this post are my own.*

#win #giveaway #sponsored

Hello Atlas – Giveaway Day 4

I.love.children’s.books. I’ve been working with them for DECADES, and I consider myself to be very well versed and well educated in the field diverse and inclusive literature (not only am I *obsessed* with language and culture in general, but I’ve taught young language learners from around the world for my entire career, *and* I know the importance of filling my own daughter’s library with both books that represent multiethnic children like herself, as well as stocking it with books that represent #allchildren), but when I came across Quarto Kids as a publisher just recently, I was *delighted*.

Without having paged through the book myself, I decided at the last minute to reach out to Quarto Knows to see if they would be interested in participating in the giveaway in order to include the Hello Atlas (from their Wide-Eyed Editions). When I received the book for review, I was thrilled.

The illustrations are so unique and intriguing, the variety of languages and cultures represented in the book is wide, featuring even indigenous languages in remote areas of the world. What I like best about this book, however, is that it features children around the world, doing every day things. Venturing into the world of multicultural, or diverse and inclusive literature, is sometimes “dangerous”. Many times, books feature children in traditional dress, and while I do feel it is important to honor a culture’s long standing traditions, there is also the potential to perpetuate stereotypes when we just focus on a single image of a culture.  I feel it is equally as, or more important, to show children the way they are today, which is, in essence, just like you and I. Modern, fun, and a reflection of ourselves in many ways.

The Hello Atlas has gained interest from National Educational Organizations as well, and was selected as a part of the Notable Social Studies Trade Books for Young People 2017 in the US. In short, this book is exceptional!

Wide Eyed Editions’ mission is to “encourage curiosity about the world we live in, inspiring readers to set out on their own journey of discovery”, and the Hello Atlas will successfully do just that.

Want a copy of your own? Enter the giveaway here!

*This post contains affiliate links to help keep this blog running.
To learn more about affiliate links, click here.*

*I was provided with a copy of the Hello Atlas in exchange for a review. All opinions in this post are my own.*

#win #giveaway #sponsored

 

The Barefoot Book of Children – Giveaway Day 3

About a year and a half ago, I (re)discovered Barefoot Books as a mother. Barefoot is a publishing company that I was already familiar with, as I had used a few of their books in my English as a New Language instruction. It was when my daughter was born that I took a greater interest in them, as I recognized the unique opportunity to fill my daughter’s library with diverse and inclusive literature (and at a discount at that!). I’d been with Barefoot for about  a year when they released the most diverse and inclusive book I had ever seen: The Barefoot Book of Children.

The Barefoot Book of Children is beautifully illustrated book that features simple text with complex meaning. The book is great for all ages, as the accessible narrative and gorgeous illustrations can capture the attention of even the littlest readers, and the content can be extended in so many different ways.

Take a look at some of the ways this book can help you explore topics of diversity, empathy, and curiosity with your children!

Violet has picked up so many important concepts from this book: she’s become more aware of her body, and that everyone has a body that is uniquely theirs. She’s expressed curiosity about names, languages, and writing systems. She points out the family speaking American Sign Language every, single time we come to the “languages spread” which is set in Grand Central Station #newyorkcity. She’s fallen in love with the doctor helping the baby.  Her library is full of characters who come in all shades, who have abilities of different kinds, who come from all walks of life, and that, in and of itself, is one of the biggest values that books like these have brought into our lives.

What’s more:

The second half of the of the Barefoot Book of Children features “end notes”, which allows parents to delve deeper into the content of the book, as well as let older children explore and discover on their own.

I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again, and again, and again. The power of this book is not only creating the opportunity for #allchildren to see themselves in books, but also for #allchildren to see #allchildren reflected in the books that they read. I can’t say it enough. I *love* the Barefoot Book of Children!

Want a copy for yourself?

Enter the giveaway here (through 4/5/17).

*This post contains affiliate links to help keep this blog running.
To learn more about affiliate links, click here.*

NYChildren – Giveaway Day 2

Up next in our Bringing the World Into Your Home & Raising Global Children blog series is a book and project that are very near and dear to my heart.

NYChildren is a project that aims to “photograph one child from every country on earth. All need to live in New York City.” While studying for my master’s degree I was looking for an internship to carry out for credit, and I stumbled upon Danny Goldfield’s project: NYChildren. At that time, Danny hoped to bring his participants (children of the world living in NYC and their families) together for play groups, picnics, and other events.  As a student of Multicultural Education, Danny’s efforts at bringing children of the world together in one great city (New York!!) really spoke to me.

Danny’s rationale behind the project is that by reaching out to those we might not otherwise know, by getting to know our neighbors, we can build bridges between individuals and families for the betterment of our communities.  Not only this, but celebrating the diversity of the people of the world (170 countries so far, 23 to go) and focusing on the fact that they all reside together in one city shows off the dynamics of our community, and shares how we are, quite literally, coming together and sharing a common life experience.

NYChildren’s photos are amazing and the sentiment is beautiful. Violet loves looking at the photos (she loves babies and other children), and I am so grateful to have the countries of the world work their way into our vernacular and conversations on a regular basis. The NYChildren book is a fantastic way to bring the world and it’s people into your home for children.

 

One lucky winner will take home the whole bundle, including a signed copy of the NYChildren book! Enter the giveaway here.

*This post contains affiliate links to help keep this blog running.
To learn more about affiliate links, click here.*

#win #giveaway #sponsored

The Skin You Live in & Multicultural Markers – Giveaway day 1

When I was planning for this giveaway, I wanted to be sure to include a good variety of diverse and inclusive literature. We *adore* books in our house. They’re our go to for “together time”, we pack books for everywhere we go, they’re stowed away in every room of our house (and the car), we’ve got book subscriptions, book hand-me-downs, a book business, book swaps, library books, brand new books, and to keep things consistently fresh we’ve got them in rotation… you name it, we’ve got it. We just love books. 🙂  Children learn so much from books, they create fond memories around story time, and books can send truly meaningful messages that our children will revisit over and over again, pouring over the words, the illustrations, and their bond with you, as well as with the content. We’ve got a great lineup of fun, beautiful, meaningful literature for one lucky winner to enjoy!

The first set of resources I’ll be taking a close look at are The Skin You Live In by Michael Tyler and David Csicsko and Crayola’s Multicultural Markers — These two items are a natural and powerful pair.

The Skin You Live In is a rhythmic, poetic text with playful illustrations that is fun to read. The book explores our different shades of skin, celebrates each and every one of us, just the way we are in a fun, approachable way for children.  The Skin You Live In speaks to the self-confidence that comes with being who you are, the value you place on the people around you by embracing them just they way *they* are, and the beauty of the world’s diversity.

Tyler’s book highlights how all people are just the same: “The skin you have fun in; the skin that you run in; the skin that you hop, skip and jump in the sun in. The skin that you laugh in; the skin that you cry in; the skin that you look to the sky and ask, ‘Why?’ in.” I love how this book touches on the human condition as it is, in a positive, unifying way.

It also highlights the beauty of our uniqueness: “Your coffee and cream skin, your warm cocoa dream skin… Your chocolate chip, double dip sundae supreme skin! Your marshmallow treat skin, your spun sugar sweet skin . . . your cherry topped, candy dropped, frosting complete skin.”

Tyler goes on to hit on some more difficult topics, in a way that I feel could be confusing for young children, though, this brings us around to the importance of exploring books together, ensuring that we are having meaningful and timely discussions around the content we are reading.  By pointing out what skin is not, Tyler makes a strong statement that skin should not be divisive: “It’s not dumb skin or smart skin, or keep us apart skin; or weak skin or strong skin, I’m right and you’re wrong skin.”

Tyler ends the book with his last, powerful, unifying message: “when we stand side-by-side in our wonderful hues… We all make a beauty, so wonderfully true. We are special and different and just the same, too!”

This book does important work for so many reasons. Not only is it of utmost importance that #allchildren see themselves reflected in the books that they read, but it is equally as important that all children see all children reflected in the books that they read.

I paired these books with the Crayola Multicultural Markers, as each of these items allows children to explore the colors of us, to represent all people in their libraries and in their art, and they both help to open up good conversations and discussions around diversity. You can see Violet in this picture matching skin tones, exploring diversity, and making connections across mediums. These two resources really go hand in hand!

If you’d like to get your hands on these items, be sure to enter the “Bringing the World Into Your Home for Children” giveaway here.

*This post contains affiliate links to help keep this blog running.
To learn more about affiliate links, click here.*

Bringing the World Into Your Home for Children — A Giveaway!

*Giveaway Ended*

I’m very, very, very excited to announce this new blog series (and giveaway! — entry form found at the bottom of this post).

These days, for so many reasons, “bringing the world into our home” has been on my mind. I mentioned in the recent “bloom where you are planted” post  that we are vetting preschools, making big life decisions around where we’d like to live, and in this process we’re hashing out our “non-negotiables” for life in general. It’s big stuff that our family is going through, and I keep coming back to the importance our family places on raising a “global citizen” — the desire to raise a curious, well-rounded, sensitive, empathic, culturally-aware child makes its way into each area of our lives.  We all know that our world is changing in dynamic ways, and we want to be sure that our child is prepared to keep up with all of the richness and challenges that she’ll encounter in this “global world”.

I feel like global ideas follow me around, they’re everywhere I go, etched into everything I do. In education (my full time job) *and* parenting (my other full time job) the themes of “raising a global child” and “bringing the world into our home” keep coming up. I attended professional development last week, led by Paul Bloomberg of The Core Collaborative (love him!) and he touched on The 16 Habits of Mind, or what research shows to be the consistent behaviors of highly intelligent people.  It hits home with me both professionally and personally, because, well, who doesn’t want to raise up the highly intelligent future (world) citizens?  Not only are many of these habits of mind values that fill up our hearts, but they also really jive with our minds. 🙂   Academically and professionally speaking, some of these habits, such as “listening with understanding and empathy”, “thinking flexibly”, “questioning and posing problems”, “thinking and communicating with clarity”, “creating, imagining, and innovating”, “responding with wonderment and awe”, “taking responsible risks”, and “thinking interdependently”, directly coincide with the International Baccalaureate’s learner profile (I’ve been inspired by the IB for decades!), a set of qualities that IB schools strive to instill in learners: inquirers, communicators, risk takers, balanced, reflective, open-minded, balanced…

All of these educational theories, values really, bring us around to the need, the pull, to  inspire curiosity, open-mindedness, and flexibility of mindset in children.  Navigating our cross-cultural world takes skill and finesse, a proficiency that may seem difficult (or expensive!) to instill in children, but I promise you, it takes nothing more than a commitment to developing a global mindset, getting crafty with resources, a little local (or global!) exploration, and the willingness to step out of your comfort zone and embrace the world for it’s people, for yourself, and for your family.

Over the next few weeks, I’ll be sharing some of my favorite, hand picked resources, toys, games, activities, and perspectives in order to “bring the world into your home”. Don’t miss this important blog series, and the chance to win an awesome set of fantastic materials!

One winner will take home the entire bundle, and you’ll receive:

The Barefoot Book of Children, by Tessa Strickland and Kate DePalma (Barefoot Books)

Children of the World Memory Game (Barefoot Books)

Putumayo Kids’ World Party CD (Putumayo, via Barefoot Books)

The Skin You Live In, by Michael Tyler and David Csicsko (Chicago Children’s Museum)

Crayola Multicultural Markers (Crayola)

NYChildren book, by Danny Goldfield

Decorative Language Speech Bubble (The Colorful Berry)

Set of Rainbow Waldorf Multicultural Peg Dolls (The Modern Tot Shoppe)

Eeboo Spanish Bingo (Eeboo)

Eeboo French Bingo (Eeboo)

Eeboo Children of the World 100 Piece Puzzle (Eeboo)

Hello Atlas book, by Ben Handicott (Quarto Knows)

Personalized What a World Placemat (Oopsie Daisy, Fine Art for Kids)

 

I love this quote from Stacie Berdan, and couldn’t have said it better myself: “Global parenting is a mindset; it can take place anywhere and under any circumstances. By taking a proactive role in enhancing your child’s global awareness, you can teach your child to understand and deal with the challenges of a rapidly changing world. Plus it’s fun!”

Enter the giveaway here!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Links to reviews:

The Skin You Live In & Crayola Multicultural Markers

NYChildren Project & Book

The Barefoot Book of Children

The Hello Atlas, Quarto Knows

Eeboo French and Spanish Bingo Games

Rainbow Waldorf Peg Dolls

Eeboo Children of the World 100 Piece Puzzle

The Colorful Berry Word Art

What a World Placemat

Children of the World Memory Game

*This post contains affiliate links to help keep this blog running.
To learn more about affiliate links, click here.*

#win #giveaway #sponsored

1, 2, 3, Andres!

I am crazy excited to bring Violet to her very first concert!

I hadn’t heard of him until a friend recommended this concert as a fun, family friendly event…. but he’s a Latin Grammy Award winning singer who performs in Spanish and English for children. His music is super fun, and he’s coming to New York (he’s touring all over the US, if anyone that’s not local to the NYC metro area wants to check him out!)

Can’t wait!