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Archive for December, 2017

Five STEM Gifts Kids Will Love to Receive (and Parents Will Love to Give)

STEM Gifts

With the focus in schools today on science, technology, education and math (STEM), many modern toys are catering to this trend. After all, STEM gifts provide much more than entertainment. They offer opportunities for children to develop problem solving and critical thinking skills.

Here are five educational gift suggestions that kids will love to unwrap:

1)  VTech Brilliant Creations Genius Junior Laptop

Adults will feel good about giving preschoolers their very first laptop. It promotes comfort with a device they see their families using from a young age, and gets children comfortable using the working cursor mouse before beginning school. This mini computer has 80 learning games and is bilingual.

2)   Tile

For a cool tech item, check out Tile, the personal item tracker. Many adults depend on it for locating their keys and other belongings. It’s also a great present for students of all ages and can be used to track backpacks, computer cases, and sports equipment – just to name a few items students don’t want to misplace.

3)   Instax Mini 9 Camera and Instax SP-2 Printer

The holiday time is about making memories with friends and family. Youngsters will like taking pictures on the spot and watching them develop. Families will also love the ability to print photographs immediately from their smartphone or tablet with this printer. There are so many creative options over the holiday season to use this gift. Create your own photo station at your next holiday party and give your guests their picture to take home.

4)  Learning Resources Gears!

Any building enthusiast will love the opportunity to expand their creativity and put their budding engineering skills to use with this motorized 121-piece gear set. It includes flashing lights and a power motor which introduces children to architecture and secures their knowledge of STEM concepts such as cause-and-effect.

5)  Treasure Chest of Wood

Perhaps you’ve heard of ‘loose parts’ learning experiences at your child’s school? This treasure chest is a perfect example as it’s full of a variety of wood shapes including dowels, spindles, blocks and petal-like shapes. Children will be inspired by the playful, open-ended possibilities that encourage problem-solving and lead them to natural explorations. Those with an artistic flair will be asking for paint and glue and turn this STEM activity into one which includes the arts (STEAM).

What would you add to the holiday shopping cart?

We’ve partnered with Staples Canada for a giveaway that’s just in time for the holidays!

You can win a Staples $100 gift card by entering below! The contest is open to people living in Ontario and ends December 19th.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Posted in: Math Tutoring, Science Tutoring

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Holiday Gifts For Teachers That Won’t Break The Bank

Gifts for Teachers

Say thanks this holiday season with a gift that shows your gratitude for the time and heart your child’s teacher puts into teaching them.

We polled our team of tutors for a list of seven thoughtful yet practical presents that are big on appreciation without putting a big dent in your wallet.

A handwritten note: Teachers genuinely appreciate artwork and mementos from their students. Encourage your child to prepare a handmade picture or card with a thoughtful letter. Don’t be surprised to see it displayed in a place of honour at the teacher’s desk next time you visit the classroom.

A children’s book: Teachers are always looking for new books to add to their collection. Head to your local Indigo and let your child choose a book to gift their teacher; if you’re worried the teacher may already have it, stick with one of the latest finds. Encourage your child to write a personalized inscription inside the front cover to make this the perfect teacher appreciation gift.

School supplies: It’s no secret that teachers can’t get enough of school supplies. Dry-erase markers and colourful Sharpies are two popular supplies that teachers love to use but rarely buy for themselves. Pick up a pack or two of these multipurpose markers for a gift that’s guaranteed to be well-used all year long.

Gift cards:  You can’t go wrong with gift cards, and Indigo or Staples are excellent choices. Teachers love the chance to stock up on supplies or pick up a new book to enjoy with their class. Another popular option is a gift card to the coffee shop that’s nearest the school, to be used for a lunchtime coffee run.

School-safe snacks: Beyond regular classroom time, school days are jam-packed for teachers. Between supervising an extra-curricular, indoor recesses, meetings, and staying late for planning and marking, they can put in a lot of extra hours. Create a snack pack full of healthy, nut-free treats that your child’s teacher can leave at school to nourish them when they need it most.

A tote bag: A roomy, durable tote bag with a reinforced bottom is a fantastic teacher gift. They’re always carrying books, marking, science and craft supplies between home and school, and a great bag will make it easy to do.

Gloves: With hours spent outside for yard duty, a cozy pair of gloves will keep a teacher’s fingers warm during the winter months while still giving them the freedom to use their fingers to help with jackets and opening snacks. Choose something on the thick side, as the weather feels extra cold when standing around in the schoolyard.

Posted in: Parent Education Resources

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