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Toys are Tools: Review + Giveaway: PicWits! Sharpen Your Social Wits!

Toys are Tools: Review + Giveaway: PicWits! Sharpen Your Social Wits! | Play = Learning | Scoop.it

WHAT: PicWits! from Mindware
DOES: practice being flexible and fun with language; practice being a better social communicator

INVEST: $24.95AGES:10 and up (you may be able to go lower with adult guidance)TOOLS: Flexibility is My Superpower, Foment Love of Language, Lose and Win Gracefully

EXPERT OPINION: Nicole Kolenda, M.S., CCC-SLP, P.C., Speech & Language Pathologist
GIVEAWAY:  Win your own box of PicWits!

Jenn Choi's insight:

Last Day to Enter!!!

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Toys are Tools: Review + Giveaway: TENZI: Make a Decision and Roll With It!

Toys are Tools: Review + Giveaway: TENZI: Make a Decision and Roll With It! | Play = Learning | Scoop.it

WHAT: TENZI from Carma Games, LLC
INVENTORS: Steve Mark and Kevin Carroll

DOES: good mood maker, great icebreaker, Q-bitz fans would love this, brings whole family together even the g-parents, absolutely adaptable for younger kidsINVEST:  $14.95AGES: 7 and up (but you can definitely do younger ages!)TOOLS: My Body Needs to Move, Lose and Win Gracefully, Social Scene Helper

GIVEAWAY:  TWO Winners will win their very own customized sets of TENZI.  (You can choose from the available colors- I am jealous that I can't enter this one so I'll be mad at you if you don't go for it.)

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Playmobil Pyramid Adventure

Totally Awesome!
Jenn Choi's insight:

Recently, a friend gave me her Playmobil Pyramid set.  My son and I went online to find more photos of the set and then we found this video.  This kid is so cool.  I love his narration, his imagination, his perspective taking skills!  Listen carefully to what he's saying.  He's such a good storyteller.

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Toys are Tools: Review and Giveaway: Crazy Aaron's Thinking Putty Hypercolors: Change Is Definitely Good

Toys are Tools: Review and Giveaway: Crazy Aaron's Thinking Putty Hypercolors: Change Is Definitely Good | Play = Learning | Scoop.it

WHAT:  Heat Sensitive Hypercolor Putty by Crazy Aaron's Thinking Putty

DOES: fidget to focus, fidget to wake up your creativity, fidget and be social, fidget and make art, fidget and feel alive!!!INVEST:  $11 MSRP (3.2 oz tin)AGES: 3+  (I could do 2+ but only with supervision)TOOLS: Family Fix-its, Holiday/Birthday Build-Uponner, Social Scene Helper, Think Like a Scientist/Engineer
EXPERT OPINION: Pediatric Occupational Therapist Susan L. Roberts, MDiv, OTR/L

GIVEAWAY and DISCOUNT CODE:  Win a tin of Glow-in-the-Dark Putty and one Heat Sensitive Hypercolor Putty too! 

Jenn Choi's insight:

If you do not own putty, then by the end of this review, I have a feeling you will start shopping immediately. Yes.  I kid you not.  It's that good.

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Toys are Tools: Review + Giveaway: Meet Super Duper Pubs: An Educational Trailblazer

Toys are Tools: Review + Giveaway: Meet Super Duper Pubs: An Educational Trailblazer | Play = Learning | Scoop.it
Jenn Choi's insight:

Have you ever heard of Super Duper Publications.  They are setting new standatds o make learning fun and easier.

 

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Toys are Tools: Review & Giveaway: Weird and Wacky Contraption Lab: The Art of Science

Toys are Tools: Review & Giveaway: Weird and Wacky Contraption Lab: The Art of Science | Play = Learning | Scoop.it


Did you know that "rube goldberg" is a term named after Reuben Lucius Goldberg, a Pulitzer Prize winning cartoonist, sculptor, and author.  He was actually trained as an engineer but instead he became a cartoonist where he would show how people would create a complex sequence to do a simple task. You know.... sort of like government bureaucracies?

Jenn Choi's insight:

Study the science of art and the art of science  --Leonardo da Vinci

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Toys are Tools: Review + Giveaway: eeBoo: Famialiarity and Playfulness Go A Long Way

Toys are Tools: Review + Giveaway: eeBoo: Famialiarity and Playfulness Go A Long Way | Play = Learning | Scoop.it

WHAT: eeBoo's Learn to Draw by Lizzy Rockwell and Learn to Draw Animals by Kevin Hawkes

DOES: bookz that teach drawing and inspire thoughtful expression- look at the pictures- I have proof! INVEST:  $5.99 each (seriously... it doesn't get any better than that)AGES: 5+ and 7+ respectively- if your child is not used to drawing, then especially at those starter ages of 5 or 7 (depending) on the book, I suggest you sit with them for moral support.

TOOLS:  Express Yourself
EXPERT OPINION: Petra Pankow,  Manager of Tours and Gallery Interpretation, Montclair Art Museum and independent museum arts educator at various institutions (MoMA, Guggenheim)

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Toys are Tools: Review + Giveaway: Super Fidgets: Caterpinch & Mini PushPathz

Toys are Tools: Review + Giveaway: Super Fidgets: Caterpinch & Mini PushPathz | Play = Learning | Scoop.it
Jenn Choi's insight:

These are Super Fidgets and I'm giving them away.  If you want to know what delectable FEELS like, you need to try these.  Your kids will love them and they are great for coordination and strengthening.

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Minecraft spawns classroom lessons

Minecraft spawns classroom lessons | Play = Learning | Scoop.it
Teachers put popular video game to work as a tool for classroom learning.

Via Maria Margarida Correia
Jenn Choi's insight:

HMMMMM...... Must check this out.  They love Minecraft!

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20 Must-Have Digital Teaching Tools For Parents - Edudemic

20 Must-Have Digital Teaching Tools For Parents - Edudemic | Play = Learning | Scoop.it
Parents have it tough. They're tasked with ensuring their children have the best nutrition, experiences, and education. There's basically a library of apps that can help you out with all three.

Via Making Friends
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Problem Solving 101 -Quadrilla Giveaway ($150 value)

Problem Solving 101 -Quadrilla Giveaway ($150 value) | Play = Learning | Scoop.it
Jenn Choi's insight:

Review+Giveaway: This is no ordinary marble run and it is not a standout because it's $150 or because it is made of gorgeous wood.  The cool part is the design.  It gets kids "thinkering." 

 

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Toys are Tools: Review + Giveaway: Power Popper: Rough and Tumble Play is Good

Toys are Tools: Review + Giveaway: Power Popper: Rough and Tumble Play is Good | Play = Learning | Scoop.it

WHAT:  Power Popper by Hog Wild

DOES: great opportunity to do rough-and-tumble play but safely, great for bilateral coordination (writing skills) INVEST:  MSRP $14.99 comes with balls too but extra set of popper balls is $4.99 AGES: 4+TOOLS: My Body Needs to Move, Holiday Build-Uponner
EXPERT OPINION: Pediatric Occupational Therapist Susan L. Roberts, MDiv, OTR/L 

GIVEAWAY:  Win your own Power Popper

Jenn Choi's insight:

I love what this therapist had to say about this toy.  It's awesome!

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Toys are Tools: Review + Giveaway: Peapod: Squeeze to Focus, Hug to Calm

Toys are Tools: Review + Giveaway: Peapod: Squeeze to Focus, Hug to Calm | Play = Learning | Scoop.it

WHAT: Peapod (MEDIUM) by Abilitations

DOES:  envelop your child with indescribably comfortable pressure.  Helps them do certain tasks independently like.... READING... (and playing video games.. oh wait, they don't need so much help with that)INVEST:  $89.99TOOLS: Family Fix-its, I Can Take Care of Myself, My Body Needs to Move

GIVEAWAY:  Win your OWN Peapod!!! Shipped FREE to your home!

Jenn Choi's insight:

Today is the last day of OT Month. As you may know from a recent review, I think OTs have something helpful to say about practically any problem that anyone might be having.  As you may have guessed the Peapod offers increased focus and calm via enveloping deep pressure and of course, that's an OT thing. OT's have the coolest tools.  In fact, I'm not sure what would be more fun, a product gallery at an AOTA conference or the Toy Fair.

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Toys are Tools: Review and Giveaway: SolPals Moonbeams Flower or Star: Make Every Night "Earth Night"

Toys are Tools: Review and Giveaway: SolPals Moonbeams Flower or Star: Make Every Night "Earth Night" | Play = Learning | Scoop.it
Jenn Choi's insight:

WHAT: SolPals (solar-powered hybrid utility light/night light) Moonbeams Flower (or Star)

DOES: teaches kids how solar power can help conserve energy and increase safety at home; acts as emergency light INVEST:  $29.95  (Moonbeams Mini-Projector is $19.95)  Additional Projector Lens can be purchased separatelyAGES:1 minute old and up (because you can't be age Zero)TOOLS: Family Fix-its, Fertilize Responsibility and Courtesy, Think Like a Scientist/Engineer

GIVEAWAY:  Win your own Moonbeam Mini-Projector! You choose the color! (U.S. Only please)

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Toys are Tools: Small Yellow Campaign + Giveaway: Meet the Brick Artist: Nathan Sawaya

Toys are Tools: Small Yellow Campaign + Giveaway: Meet the Brick Artist: Nathan Sawaya | Play = Learning | Scoop.it

WHAT: Vote for Small Yellow- created by Nathan Sawaya

DOES: Step 1 in my Campaign to Rescue Creativity

GIVEAWAY: . Win your own AUTOGRAPHED COPY of the book that is quickly disappearing off bookstore shelves all over the world...  The Art of Nathan Sawaya

Jenn Choi's insight:

Nathan Sawaya was born in Washington and raised in Oregon.  As a child he drew cartoons, wrote stories, perfected magic tricks and... you guessed it.. he played with LEGOs.   Sawaya attended NYU and NYU School of Law and began practicing law but then.. but then... he realized he would rather be sitting on the floor expressing himself with LEGO bricks, than sitting in a boardroom negotiating contracts.

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Toys are Tools: Making Machines Out of Paper and Sticks

Toys are Tools: Making Machines Out of Paper and Sticks | Play = Learning | Scoop.it

This is what teaching looks like to me.  Coincidentally, this what learning looks like to me. You don't always see it in the same picture.  Reminder: National Teachers' Appreciation Week is coming soon.  May 6-12, 2013

Jenn Choi's insight:

You must check out their affordable book containing experiments that use only affordable materials!

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A Gifted Student Learns to Thrive with Dyslexia

A Gifted Student Learns to Thrive with Dyslexia | Play = Learning | Scoop.it

Skye Lucas tested in the gifted range in preschool. But she fell behind her kindergarten classmates when they started reading. Then, like many other dyslexic children in Manhattan private schools, she was subtly asked to leave.

Jenn Choi's insight:

I wonder what would happen if non-dyslexic children were exposed to learning techniques that dyslexic students use.  Would they not learn how to read?  If they would then why don't we teach every child this way?

 

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Toys are Tools: Review & Giveaway: The Educational Triple Threat (Vista Explorer Tripod + Case Star Clip + Tablet/Phone)

Toys are Tools: Review & Giveaway: The Educational Triple Threat (Vista Explorer Tripod + Case Star Clip + Tablet/Phone) | Play = Learning | Scoop.it

I see this requirement often in today's job advertisements:

Candidate must have strong oral and written communications skills.

I think it is fair to say that writing is taught and tested in school but what about oral presentation skills?  In many schools, I feel like kids are expected to kinda pick it up on their own.  But many folks never do and struggle with it throughout their adult lives

Jenn Choi's insight:

awesome lightweight and kid-friendly tripod reviewed and a giveaway too!

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Reading, Writing and Video Games

Reading, Writing and Video Games | Play = Learning | Scoop.it
The concepts of work and play have become farcically reversed: schoolwork is meant to be superfun and play, like homework, is meant to teach.

Via Maria Margarida Correia
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Learning In The 21st Century Might Only Require 3 Things

Learning In The 21st Century Might Only Require 3 Things | Play = Learning | Scoop.it
Learning In The 21st Century Might Only Require 3 Things

Via Tara Johnson
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Talking Tom- Kids' Newest Study Buddy (Giveaway Too!) - Help Study for Tests!

Talking Tom- Kids' Newest Study Buddy (Giveaway Too!) - Help Study for Tests! | Play = Learning | Scoop.it
Jenn Choi's insight:

This app-to-real life toy can be way more useful than your average poop joke outlet.  Some kids may find it useful to access and enhance their memory before test dates just by telling Ben or Tom what they need to remember!  It works for us!  Remember, we're giving one away to a lucky reader! Watch our video and he how he rocked his test!

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