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Play Blog

It’s time to open up those windows, do a little spring cleaning, and get outdoors! Sometimes it’s easier for our kids (and us) to stay snuggled up on the couch and put in Frozen for the 10th time of the day than get the kids motivated to go outside. After being indoors for so many months, we forget how great being outdoors can make us feel! Being outside reduces stress, provides a reset for our brains and gives us a healthy dose of Vitamin D. We have some great outdoor activities that will help your kids trade in the glow of the screen for the light of the sun!

From communication skills to relationship development, playing games with others works our brain "muscle" in so many ways. Board games can encourage healthy brain development in kids and teens and for older adults playing games improves attention and working memory. Whether we are one year old or ninety-nine, research, and studies show significant emotional and cognitive gains for children, maintaining sharpness and decreasing risk of Alzheimer's in adults and promoting healing and memory of aging adults. 

With lots of families staying at home and parents working from home looking for things for their kids to do, we decided to release a few of them for FREE on our website. We're excited to release this fun coloring book for young kids called World of Animals. With over 40 illustrations of fun animals in the Safari, Woodland, Jungle, Dessert, Farm, Rain Forest and more, this free printable pdf coloring book will keep your kids entertained for hours.
The Kindergarten age child can be full of boundless energy. They are running, jumping, skipping non-stop. Kindergarten age children are eager to please and might want to show off what they have made or see. Encourage your child to tell you more about their creation, ask open ended questions like, what is this (door) for, or why did you choose a certain color. Kindergarten age children might love telling jokes. Make it an evening practice to tell a joke of the day at breakfast or around the dinner table. 

Legacy Toys is excited to announce that Asmodee has just released  free print & play version of their upcoming title to their bestselling Pandemic Game series.

Pandemic: Hot Zone

Based on the bestselling Pandemic, Pandemic: Hot Zone features the same nail-biting cooperative experience but in a smaller, quicker form that you can take anywhere.

A kid’s imagination knows no bounds. They can sit at a table with a simple piece of paper and think of a thousand ways to bring it life. They can roll it up as a telescope and venture around on their own personal safari, stalking the pets and the parents that roam their at-home ‘jungle.’ They can tighten that roll of paper just a little more at the end and turn it into a sword, going so far as to become the living embodiment of Blackbeard himself… The possibilities are truly endless!

Last night I used the iPad to turn on a tutorial video about a new board game!  It was just the ticket to get his mind detoxed from the mind numbing digital world and into a fun family activity!  

 

Look… We get it.

With all of this COVID chaos, it can be hard not to go a little stir crazy. As much as we love our families, sitting around the table and making empty eye contact over grilled cheese and condensed soup for the fourth day in a row can get a little… dull.

Lucky for you, we’ve got loads of ideas to keep your loved ones entertained. As frustrating as it may be to stay cooped up with seemingly nothing to do, we firmly believe that all of this ‘together-time’ may actually be a blessing in disguise! After all, nothing screams “Family Bonding” like cancelled classes and shuttered office doors.

With this in mind, please enjoy these 3 ways to avoid family “cabin fever.”

Virtual field trips are a great way to expose kids to new places all from the comfort of home. Now more than ever, is it easier to visit destinations around the world from the comfort of your couch.

With increased family time in light of recent events being able to provide fun and educational experiences from home are crucial.   Virtual field trips are a fun and educational way to visit places virtually and keep “travel” going.

Many of us are adjusting to a “new normal” of more time at home with our kids. At Melissa & Doug, we’re putting our creative brains to work to give you activity ideas to keep your children busy and help you reduce your stress. Below are ideas designed to encourage kids’ independent play so you can get some work done. Try those that might be a good fit for your family, and let us know what is working by posting your experiences with this hashtag: #PowerOfPlay.
We have come up with a top 100 list of fun ideas for you to do or suggest to your kids when they are "bored." 
Humans have a lot of incredible abilities. We can jump, run, throw things, speak, sing, dance, play musical instruments,… the list goes on and on. But we think one of the most unique and most incredible of all our skills is the ability to reason.

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