Saturday, May 31, 2014

Coming Attraction: 'WordGirl' Appreciation Week

It's my son's favorite video series on the PBS Kids iPhone app, and she's got a special week coming her way starting June 2. It's WordGirl!

And because May's Word of the Month happens to be "Appreciate," it's the perfect lead-in for the five new upcoming WordGirl episodes that teach kids the meaning of appreciation.

Check local listings for when the episodes will air, but tune in as WordGirl and Captain Huggy Face fight crime around their fair city and teach citizens the value of proper grammar. They'll also show kiddos what it means to appreciate something.

Here are some easy WordGirl tips to help kids understand "appreciation":

Manners matter! – Even a small gesture of gratefulness can really make a person’s day, whether it’s saying “thanks” or giving a heartfelt compliment. Have your child send a “thank you” note to show their appreciation for someone special. “Thank you” cards don’t just have to be for receiving gifts!

Adopt an attitude of gratitude! – Encourage your child to take the time to recognize what they appreciate by making a list of all the things and people they’re thankful for. Have them try adding something new to the list each week. Then, kick the gratitude up a notch by encouraging them to do a good deed every day such as walking a neighbor’s dog, offering up their seat on the bus or train or simply holding the door open for someone.

Commit to giving back! – Make giving back to your community a frequent habit for your family. Volunteering is a great way to show you care, as is giving to a local charity. Engage your child in gathering up their old clothes, books and toys to donate. It will go a long way toward assisting others, while also helping your child learn to appreciate all that they have!

Hand over responsibility!
 – Show your child what it feels like to be in someone else’s shoes for a while. Try role-playing and let your child be the “mom” or “dad” for the day, assisting with some of your responsibilities. It’s a great way to help them develop a deeper appreciation for all that moms and dads do for the family each day!

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

REDCAT International Children's Film Festival 2014 -- A Kids' Film Tradition Continues!

CC and I hit REDCAT this weekend for a fun batch of films
Short films from Germany, Iran and South Korea, among other countries, were on the play list this weekend, as CC and I made our way downtown to REDCAT's annual International Children's Film Festival.

Some of CC's favorites included Papa Cloudy, an American short film about a cloud that heads to the desert to provide some much-needed rain. Made from felt pieces, the cloud and its blue tears are sweet and so full of character.

The Japanese film Twins in Bakery is an adorable take on what happens when a couple of little sausages take over a bakery after closing time. All the food suddenly comes alive, complete with adorable animal faces.

Noodle Fish, a film from South Korea, explores a fish's curiosity of what's above the water -- while using uncooked noodles as the medium. There's a clever ending, too!

There's still one more weekend left of the festival! Check out info here:

12:00 pm   Take Wing
1:30 pm     Paint Me A Story: Animation from Around the Globe
3:00 pm     Experiencia! Films from Latin America
12:00 pm   Talk to the Animals
1:30 pm     Earthwise
3:00 pm     Cinema Magic
REDCAT International Children's Film Festival
April 26-May 11 (Weekends)
631 W. 2nd St.
Los Angeles, CA 90012
Tickets: $5


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