Less Is More!

Have you joined the pre-holiday toy decluttering challenge? If so, I’d love to hear how it’s going for you. For a little more inspiration during this challenge, I have asked my friend, Alana Chernecki of Brillante Design, to give her two cents on decluttering. Alana is the only other Reggio-inspired preschool teacher turned designer of children’s spaces I’ve ever come across and I’m so excited to introduce you to her today. Read on for her guest post and see her beautiful spaces.

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Art Workshop For Children: Self-Portraits

Let me introduce you to my favorite new book about process art and Reggio-inspired learning. Friends, meet Art Workshop For Children. Art Workshop For Children, please meet my friends. I’m sure you guys will get along really well.

Art Workshop for Children, by Barbara Rucci and Betsy McKenna, is a breathtaking book (the photos literally made me gasp when I first flipped through the pages) filled with unique process-based art activities for kids and tips on how to prepare your art space for creative exploration. I especially love the thoughtful reflections woven throughout the book by Reggio-inspired educator, Betsy McKenna, on how to raise creative thinkers and why this is important for all children.

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Homeschool & Building A Life With Intention

Did you see my post about our upcoming road trip? If so, you know that our family is embarking on new adventures and that we are opening up to some radical changes in our lifestyle. We are putting a lot of focus on our hopes and dreams for our family and are taking some big steps to build a life with intention.

One of these family dreams is to offer our kids an education that is full of incredible life experiences and uninhibited exploration. We don’t know exactly what that looks like or how to achieve it, but we know we are ready to try something new to get there.

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Got STEAM?

You probably know by now that I’m all about art, design, and child-led learning, but there’s one hot topic where I feel sadly inadequate when it comes to working with kids. That topic is STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, & Math). Thankfully, the new STE(A)M initiatives have added the A for Art so I’m not at a total loss! I have been learning more about how to engage my kids in STEAM activities and am excited to share a new resource that is helping me do this.

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Easy Yarn Wall Hanging

Last weekend I was invited to host a creative activity at a fundraiser for the Make-A-Wish Foundation. If you don’t know who they are, this amazing organization helps to grant wishes to kids with terminal illnesses. Some kids wish to travel, perform on stage, meet their idols or even become their idol for a day! It was so special to meet some of the “wish kids” and help bring a smile to their faces with a fun, creative project.

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Reggio Inspired Art Secrets

You probably know this by now, but I am a huge fan of the incredible art teacher and blogger, Meri Cherry. I remember discovering her work a couple of years ago when she wrote a post about wood working with toddlers. I immediately felt a kinship and was so excited to find another Reggio inspired art blogger. We eventually got to meet in person over a plate of tacos and we both couldn’t stop blabbering on about Reggio and kids art. We have been friends ever since! Meri has a way of sharing her experience as a teacher that is unlike any other teacher and blogger I know. Her beautiful photos and down-to-earth voice bring you into her world and make you feel like you are being let in on a secret. So it’s no wonder she recently published an e-book called  Art Secrets Every Teacher Should Know, A Reggio Inspired Approach.

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Q&A: Navigating Art With Siblings

Reader Question:

“The difficulty I have is my daughter (5 years) as much as she loves to do art/craft like her brother (18months) there are times where she just wants to do something more grown up or even different to her brother. How would you plan this so they can do it side by side?”

When I sent out a recent reader survey, the issue of siblings came up again and again. So I am going to respond to this specific question, but also share some tips that will hopefully cover the other sibling questions that have been raised. Overall, it seems that the biggest struggle when it comes to siblings and art is managing multiple ages, abilities, and attention spans.

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Washable Marker Experiment

I’m currently working with a client to set up an art space for her 16-month-old daughter. Whenever I’m thinking about materials for toddlers, I always think about washability, but even more so when the art space is in a central area of the home. This toddler art space is in an open family room/kitchen that leads out to the back yard. It’s where this family hosts guests and spends the majority of their time, so I’d like to help them out by stocking them with the most washable supplies I can find.

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