It’s nine months of worrying, eating for two and drinking for none, reading enough books to qualify for one’s Ph.D. in obstetrics, and enduring however many numbers of excruciating painful hours of labor.
What else could be nearly as stressful? I think finding the perfect Baby gift is a close runner-up! The task gets increasingly difficult if you are not a knowledgeable, experienced mom or grandma yourself; and the ante gets upped if you are buying for the second or third-time mom who already has all the basics.
Case in point: I know a neighbor on her third baby. She has everything her new baby needs. More than everything; as her house is full of new and gently used items piled up in teetering stacks in every available corner. When friends suggested throwing her a shower, this "new" mom practically snapped. The last thing she wanted or needed was another mound of ‘stuff’ that a seasoned mom knows she really won’t use, no matter how cute or costly it is. Take note; don’t let this happen to you.
For the first-time mother, or the experienced pro, what a Mom really wants is something useable.
When shopping for a gift, or gifts, ideally you want a mix of perishable, practical, and whimsical items. Giving a gift they will actually use and appreciate will make you a legend among your friends. Collect a few of the prettiest and most practical things you know the new mother needs. Every new baby needs onesies, sleepers, socks, washcloths and bibs. Once you have a no-nonsense basic gift in hand, then feel free to add a personal or whimsical touch. A small keepsake of some kind is always appreciated.
Being the mom of two baby boys myself, it meant that we received enough blue teddy bears to overrun any magical picnic in the forest. I ended up re-gifting most of them to every available boy baby I could find over the next few years. Please, step AWAY from the giant, carnival-sized stuffed animals.
Remember Mom is a person too. She knows that her baby will take priority above all, but it’s still nice to let her know she is loved and appreciated as a person. Add something sweet for her, whether it’s an edible chocolate treat, or scented bath salts, just to let her know she’s special.
These days, there are unlimited varieties and terrific value for your money in giving a gift basket. It is a versatile, gorgeous, and practical gift that delights every person who receives one. They can be tailored to occasion and baby gender, and showcase a bountiful array of thoughtful gifts.
You can find baby gift baskets online, shop by theme and price range, and find a high quality selection of premium items in a beautifully presented gift basket. It absolutely saves you precious time shopping several different stores for each item, and it saves you the cost and inevitable headache of buying paper and wrapping the gift yourself. Many companies will deliver the next day.
So, need a practical and pretty gift for baby? Try ordering a luxurious, beautiful gift basket.
Not such hard work, after all.
About the Author:
Vivi Andris is the owner of Amor Gift Baskets,where you can shop for gift baskets for any occasion including baby gift baskets.
Article Source: http://www.articlesbase.com/shopping-articles/shopping-for-baby-gifts-make-it-pretty-practical-644592.html
Can anyone tell me are these big kids or small teenagers?
Toys that are formed from high-tech electronics embedded with semiconductor chips are generally known as edutainment toys. The quality and substance of their play may be limited by the number of buttons a child can push. Some promise to challenge a child by allowing him or her to interact with the educational content to learn it. For example, V.Smile offers a Baby Infant Development System aimed at introducing interactive learning to kids 9 months to 3 years. They can watch educational videos with this system or push buttons on a tray to influence what is happening on a television screen.
Some older toys are also adding electronic bells and whistles to appeal to the current technologically sophisticated generation of children. Dolls now interact with the Internet. Wooden Brio trains make electronic sounds and can be controlled by infrared remotes. The classic Fisher-Price Rock-A-Stack now also comes in a Dance Baby Dance version whose center rod lights up and plays songs when the rings are stacked on it.
Open vs. Closed-ended Toys
An open-ended toy encourages free play with an unlimited number of outcomes. For example, a building set can be used to construct a variety of different structures. A closed-ended toy, on the other hand, has a limited and often soon exhausted number of outcomes.
Not all closed-ended toys are bad. After all, a stacker is a classic closed-ended educational toy: it can only be put together correctly in one way. However, to solve a stacker, a child must develop and use logic and fine motor skills. The child benefits from the repetition of playing with the pieces of a stacker, manipulating them with his or her fingers over and over and thinking about how they fit together until the solution is mastered and then repeated for pleasure.
A closed-ended edutainment toy, on the other hand, may only require a child to press a few buttons. Eventually, it leads to a dead end and the child grows bored and tosses the toy aside. As Martha B. Bronson notes in The Right Stuff for Children Birth to Eight, although a child can have a rich play experience with any toy, basic, open-ended toys encourage this type of experience more than rigidly programmed toys with only one or two functions do. This sort of edutainment toy is not timeless. It is meant to be replaced sooner rather than later by the next big product in edutainment that uses the latest in technological innovations.
Often people assume that toys that use new technology are more innovative and educational than non-technological educational toys. In fact, childhood specialists such as Jane Roberts (president of Young Media Australia, a consumer advocacy group), question how educational and interactive high-tech edutainment toys really are, noting that "[p]ressing buttons and having items do things for you is fairly limiting in terms of how children learn." Furthermore, many traditional toys are themselves becoming more innovative about stimulating a child's imagination and creativity without having electronics in them. For example, the blocks in FoxMind's Cliko game can be used for a variety of games that are challenging to children and adults alike.
Negative Impacts of Edutainment Toys
Overall, parents might not want to encourage children, especially younger ones, to use too often edutainment toys that involve televisions and computer screens. The authors of "Effects of Preschool Television Watching on First-Grade Children," found that preschoolers who watched more television than their peers did worse in school and were not as well socialized when they entered first grade. Researchers Frederick Zimmerman and Dr. Dimitri Christakis found that babies watching Baby Einstein DVDs and videos scored lower on language skills than babies who had never watched them at all.
In addition, Allison Sloan notes in Shopper's Guide to Healthier, Greener Toys that computers and television sets emit EMFs, "invisible forcefields whose possible health effects, from headaches to sleep disruption to cancer, are the subject of heated debate." Children's developing brains are in the greatest danger from such outside influences.
A final caution about edutainment toys is that they can foster in children an acceptance of a disposable consumer culture. A timeless toy such as a set of wooden unit blocks will hold up under heavy use for generations and can be played with at the same time by children (and adults!) of a variety of ages. Edutainment toys, on the other hand, are usually played with by only one child at a time, and they generally have a shorter playtime and life span. Children quickly master and get bored of them, or their high-tech components break, rendering the toy useless, and then they are discarded, releasing toxic chemicals and metals into the environment.
What Parents Can Do
As technology and the Internet permeate society and people's lives more and more, it does make sense to introduce children to computers and other inventions that they will need to use as they grow older. A toy is not necessarily bad or useless because it incorporates technology. That said, smart parents should examine the stated purpose of an edutainment toy, evaluate how and what it teaches, and determine if their children could receive equal or greater value from a simpler, classic toy. Roberts warns against the dangers of a parent using high-tech toys as babysitters, substituting interaction with a machine such as a single-player computer game for what should be "the best learning for young children-real-life experience when they model, create, explore, and develop their own initiatives through play."
For more resources on quality educational toys visit Kids Toy Club.
Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Laeke_Gebre
These are all important skills that young children must learn. I'm not sure if learning them through this type of game is a 'natural' way to learn, but perhaps it will give parents some confidence in teaching these skills if they can put it in a context that the children understand and have fun with. The important thing is to reinforce these qualities at home from day to day. There is no point playing games where the child is encouraged to be polite and think of others if there is no reinforcement outside the game, book or the CD.
In the first layer the child sees a young boy and girl carefully planting seeds into the earth. The sky is blue and birds fly merrily up above. In the second layer they see that their efforts are paying off! The plants are growing, but there's still more work to do. Weeds need to be taken out and the plants still need watering. Finally, in the last and topmost layer, they can barely see the children! After all of their work, the sunflowers are growing tall and strong.
With the beginning of the new millennium this company made a step forward. Apart from manufacturing model trains, the company took an initiative to produce sets for mechanical constructions. They also produced many lithographed toys. The company is very well known for the Marklin system as well which basically refers to the techniques used by them. The system uses a rail that is hidden in the roadbed of small studs while the outer rails are electrically connected. Hence, just the two outer trains are visible having simple wiring and one train is invisible. So it is actually a three train system.
Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Lisa_Adan_Mills
Education experts worry that American children are falling behind in science and math skills. But parents can instill an interest in science by capitalizing on children’s natural curiosity. Science isn’t a complicated, difficult subject – it is all around us. Here are ten ways to find science in everyday life and share science with your children.
1) Astronomy. Look up in the sky – there it is. Stars may be out of reach to little ones on the ground, but learning about them isn’t. Use the Internet, or find books that show the constellations, then spend a warm summer evening star gazing. If you have a planetarium in your neighborhood, pay a visit. If not, go to Nasa.gov to find photos, video and lots more.
2) Zoology. Animals are everywhere! Go for a nature walk and see what you find. A trip to the pet store can also be informative. Visit the zoo for a close-up look at animals, and check beforehand to see when you and your child can enjoy a lecture or feeding time.
3) Entomology. Or the study of bugs, in layman’s terms. Bugs are also everywhere. Try an ant farm, or bug collecting kit.
4) Geology. Rocks are pretty easy to find, as well. Check some books out of the library, then go for a hike and try to identify different kinds.
5) Anatomy. The human body is an exciting mystery! Did you know that the adult human has 100 trillion cells, 206 bones, 600 muscles and 22 internal organs? There are lots of interactive games, diagrams and photos online. Check them out!
6) Aeronautics. Build paper airplanes and conduct a contest to see whose design flies fastest and farthest. Read a book about the Wright brothers, while you’re at it.
7) Botany. Head to the nearest nursery and have a look around. As long as you don’t try to show up on a warm Saturday in the spring, one of the horticulturists might give you some personal tips. Take home a couple plants and care for them – watch them grow.
8) Cartography. Dora the Explorer has this one covered. Help your little ones make maps of the house, the neighborhood, their hometown. Get out other maps and do some exploring!
9) Paleontology. I’ve never met a four-year-old that wasn’t fascinated by dinosaurs. Check out some books or websites, play with dino play sets, bury “bones” in the sandbox and dig them back up!
10) Meteorology. When my children were preschoolers, we kept a weather calendar in the kitchen to be updated every day. We spent time lying on our backs in the grass, watching clouds. There are some great books and Internet resources for weather. Try the National Weather Service, or weather.com, where you can check out Doppler radar and see weather details for the entire planet!
Science doesn’t have to be complicated. Help your child discover the world around him. Find some interesting things to learn about, then do some research together!http://www.qualitytoysandhobbies.com/
Learning maths certainly doesn't need to be boring for your children in view of the wide variety of Educational math toys that are available. Make the learning of this essential skill fun and exciting. Take advantage of the many toys that have visual and moving elements, to make math more real. The learning patterns from using these educational toys have been proven to help children improve their counting abilities. And you kids with love all those educational toys!
Choosing the right educational toys and games for your children at a young age will make sure that they start out in live with the right learning environment. In order to learn, it is important to stimulate your child's creativity, curiosity, and discovery. All this can be easily achieved by making use of the educational crafts, games, puzzles and toys.
It may seem a difficult decision at first to decide on which educational toys and games to choose. Try starting out with a simple book or educational toy, and then slowly progress to more complex educational toys, music activities and puzzles. Attempt to create a fun environment for your child to learn in. Do this by taking note of your child's interests - if he or she is into monsters and dinosaurs then based your decision on choosing the educational toys on this fact. This will make sure that your child's interest remains with the toy.
Learn simple addition through play to encourage children to become familiar with numbers and slowly introduce them to math concepts, such as basic addition, counting and sorting. With some simple research into a child's ability level and toy quality, you should have no trouble in locating a variety of educational math toys to spark interest while at the same time reinforcing the importance of learning mathematical concepts.http://www.educational-toys.andallabout.com,
The "Top Toys Awards" are presented each year in New York at the American International Toy Fair. There is a variety of categories from infant up to the older children. The best and brightest toys of the year are picked. The Toy Industry has chosen the following top toys 2008 in each category.
The toy that took the best toy of the year from all categories was the TMX™" Elmo from Fisher-Price®. Elmo has three tickle spots, which are located on his toes, tummy, and chin. Tickle him and he'll start to laugh. It's easy to see why this was one of the best of the Top Toys 2008.
The girl toy of the year is made from Hasbro Inc., and it is the Butterscotch Pony from the FurReal Friends collection. Every girl dreams of having their very own pony and now they can, with the realistic sounds and movements of this lifelike little pony.
The boy toy of the year is the Spy Video Car made by Wild Planet Entertainment Inc. This small remote car has a built in infrared camera so spying on siblings and friends is great fun. You can see that top toys 2008 for both boys and girls are fun and educational.
The top game of the year for both board and CD Rom is Cranium's Zooreka. The whole family can enjoy this game, by building your very own zoo. Every move keeps the players thinking. Wait, there's more than just building a zoo, there's also danger lurking at every move in this game of chance.
There are some great choices if you are in the market for a new toy, but wait - there are more top toys 2008, so let's carry on.
The best outdoor toy for the year was a tough pick but in the end, it was Radio Flyer's Fold 2 Go® Trike. This compact handy trike can go anywhere. It comes fully assembled and folds for easy storage or transport. Now you can take your child's trike to Grandma's house. The low center of gravity makes it very stable.
Educational toys are always a popular choice and this year the toy that was chosen for providing the best skill development was the Small Globe™ 2.0 made by Oregon Scientific. It comes with 30 activities and you can make use of the cordless smartpen to navigate through all the learning activities. Your child will learn countries, populations, currencies, leaders, and so much more.
Every child needs a good activity toy and this year one of the top toys 2007 in this class was the Moon Sand™ from Spin Master. Moon sand is the new play dough. It never dries out and it can be used repeatedly, and it expands to twice the size of the package. It'd designed for ages 3 and up and your kids will find hours of playtime here.
In our modern world, electronics are important so this year the Digital Camera from Fisher Price ® is the top pick in top toys 2008 placement. There's a lot of high technology in this Kid tough camera that will keep the imagination flowing.
We've covered just a few of the top toys 2008 choices, however there are others, and what's important when buying your children toys is to buy quality, well built products, that stimulate, and help your child grow.http://toptoysguide.com/