How to Get Your Kids Outside More Often

If you wish to capture the spirit of your kids, cousins, and their friends; if you want lots of children at your house; playing in your backyard; build a swing set. Yes, build a swing set in your backyard and they will play for hours because the swing sets offered today are made to capture their attention with these huge entertainment play areas.

Frontier Swing Set 500x5001 How to Get Your Kids Outside More Often

Frontier Cedar Swing Set

There is just something special (almost magical) about playing on a swing set. They are fun, amusing, entertaining, exciting and of course promote physical exercise. So exactly why are they so much fun? For starters; children love to swing and the goal for older kids seems is to see who can go backward and forward the highest. Next, the thrill of the slide can’t be ignored. Climbing up to the top and then sliding down is sort of like a roller coaster ride and fun for all ages. Top speed is the goal but the kids can’t go to fast down because of the “safe angle” offered by most of the manufacturers. Kids enjoy the challenge of climbing and swing sets that offer the slide, rock wall, climber ramps fit the bill.

The question is what makes a swing set so exciting? Is it because they are so much fun to play on? Don’t forget that most children love playing outdoors and a swing set is like a magnet, pulling them toward the swings.

If you have the room in your backyard installing a playset is an accomplish-able task and the designs today are made so that the consumers can “do it yourself”. Most units are sold as RTA and build-able in a day or two. Safety is important to parents and having your children playing in the backyard is one way to reduce the risk or eliminate some concerns when kids visit the local parks or playgrounds. Being able to see your child at play is important as you supervise their activities. This has become imperative to mom and day because the safety of children is so important.

Why not keep young children entertained in the privacy of your own backyard by having big toys for them to play with. Fantastic choices are not only playsets but also inflatable water parks, bounce houses with slides, trampolines with enclosures, sand boxes, play tents and kids tee pees. Don’t forget about the ride on toys, such as tricycles, scooters, bikes, and classic red wagons as they promote physical activity too.

There are lots of different outdoor toys for kids to choose from, by searching online, the internet offers a vast array of different and unique items.

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Should I Decide To Build A Swing Set Myself Or Hire A Contractor

While it is true, most consumers do not know the proper steps for installation of wooden swing sets and now with providers such as Gorilla Playsets and Swing-N-Slide, the step by step instructions make this task easier than in years past. If you have basic carpentry skills and can follow step by step instructions these company’s offer an affordable solution to owning a wooden swing set. With the help of a friend and about 10 to 14 hours or a long weekend you can build a brand new outdoor swing set for your children. These types of projects require organization and commitment to follow the instructions to the letter. This is very important to ensure the safety of the children. By following the outlined steps in the owner’s manual and the installation instructions you can build one terrific wood playset for the kids. Both Gorilla Playsets and Swing-N-Slide offer easy to follow guidelines and they are available by phone just in case you have a question when building one of their wood playsets.

Willows Peak 500x500 Should I Decide To Build A Swing Set Myself Or Hire A Contractor

The Willows Peak also offers 22 sq. ft. of deck space and plentiful seating. This design contains the Rapid-LOC bracket system for quick installation and features durable wood, steel and plastic construction.


If you think you are not up for the challenge many people prefer to hire a professional to complete the project due to several reasons which can include, time restrictions or a lack of wood working skills or simply want it done quickly. When researching and hiring a contractor make sure to check their references and find out if they have experience with swing sets and playground equipment. A licensed contractor will be able to build a swing set in a shorter amount of time but they still need to follow the instructions so it is built to the manufacturer’s specifications. In other words, they should not create shortcuts or attempt to build without following the directions. Here are a few recommendations for hiring a local contractor.

Ask family, neighbors and friends for referrals. Consult your yellow pages or complete an online search. One of the first questions to ask is how many swing sets they have built and what brands are they familiar with. Second question is the time frame and number of hours they will need and if they use more hours are they going to charge you. Watch out for those hidden fees. Thirdly, are you required to help the contractor? These are just a few questions and comments for consideration but most importantly check out the contractor’s references and don’t be afraid to ask questions.

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Sleeping Slumber Bags – A Review Of Hoohobbers

Have you been searching for an exceptional birthday gift for a boy or girl? Do you need a suggestion or simply don’t know what to buy? If so you should consider a sleeping slumber bag that is handmade in the USA. This type of present is perfect for gift giving because they can be monogrammed with a child’s name. The personalize option really makes the child feel special and will last for a long time because these are high quality sleeping bag. The company that makes these is from Illinois, so they are truly an American made product and this company is proud that they can advertise “Made in the USA”. The manufacturer is called Hoohobbers and not only do they make sleeping bags they also make crib sets, comforters, and pillows.

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Blue Medallion Sleeping Bag


This company has a collection of beautiful fabrics and many textiles are considered “mix and match” which allows a consumer to be creative when designing. Their entire line is machine washable and you know how important that is when you have children. Moms and dads want bags that are easily washed in a machine especially when they know they need laundering again and again. Machine washable is one feature that most parents require. The quality is very important because these sleeping bags are not cheap and they cost more than the average bag imported from overseas. The cost is justified because the quality is fantastic. Your children can use this product for years. Hoohobbers makes fun, stylish, high quality items and they deliver on techniques of sewing like finished seams and only using the best zippers.

First-class sleeping bags will by means of no uncertainty demand a higher price tag even so you can be positive with the function of sturdiness; they will remain use-able for a long while. Moms and dads want bags that are easily washed in a machine especially when they know they need laundering again and again. Machine washable is one feature that most parents require.

Slumber bags are always a great gift for boys and girls no matter what the occasion is. Most children will tell you, they have to be the owner of one for the reason that this fashion accessory is needed for any sleep-over party.

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Kids Toys For Physical Development

Making all sorts of play toys available to children is a good thing and here’s why: when kids have lots of playthings with an extensive variety of objects it helps with the development of their skills, both physically and mentally. The toys you purchase ought to stimulate their bodies and brains in many different ways.There are toys to enhance physical development, coordination, large motor skills and small motor skills, jumping toys for kids, games to develop musicality, language skills – you name it…

The pre-school and daycare centers usually have many different types of activity toys for their classrooms and you should have the same at home. By making sure that your kids have a wide range of playthings, parents help kids experience lots of different scenarios of growth. Here we want to focus on a few different types of activity toys that promote developmental growth for children.

Radio Flyer Inchworm Kids Toys For Physical Development

Development of Large Motor Skills

Toys and games that highlight coordination, sense of balance, and build upper and lower arm strength and leg muscle are excellent for physical development. Balance bicycles, foot to floor ride on toys, and pedal cars all require a children to use the feet and legs to power them and their arms to steer them. They are ideal for large motor skill development. Push and pull toys like a wagon or doll buggy can be used for this purpose, too.

DX 20136 kids pedal car Kids Toys For Physical Development

Toys For Coordination and Strength

Playing catch with a ball or football is fun and also improves hand-eye coordination. Climbing toys such as tunnels, slides, kids bounce houses or swings at the playground all encourage coordination and build strength.

Toys For Fine Motor Skills Development

Fine motor skills are best developed with toys that help with hand-eye coordination. Such toys might include crayons, color pencils and sidewalk chalk. Chalk boards for kids that reverse with magnetic letters and numbers offer a wonderful teaching environment. Of course, any teacher’s favorite for building these skills is playing with building blocks. They can be made from cardboard, wood or plastic. It really doesn’t matter what kind of blocks they are as long as the children can stack, shape and build with them.

building blocks for kids Kids Toys For Physical Development

Best Price Toys online store offers a variety of toys for physical development, including bicycles and tricycles for kids, pedal cars, and toy wagons. We also have many construction block sets and other toys for large and small motor skill development to choose from.

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Financial Literacy Lessons For Kids

When it comes to financial literacy, today’s children have a lot to learn. As responsible parents, we use every opportunity to teach our kids some financial responsibility and give them a chance to practice what they’ve learned in real life situations.

In 2013 survey funded by Merrill Lynch Foundation, Jump$tart coalition tested high school seniors in the areas of credit, savings, tax preparation, life insurance investments and retirement planning. The students answered only 48% of the questions correctly, down about 4 points in a similar survey in 2010. Although what is considered a passing score of this survey is still being debated, it demonstrates that teens who are about to graduate and enter either the work force or college are not prepared for financial independence.

teach kids about money Financial Literacy Lessons For Kids

So, what can parents do to increase the financial literacy of their children? And when is the best time to start?

Well, while financial experts can’t designate a specific age to begin, most say the sooner the better. This idea is easy to understand. After all, when a parent asks a young child where money comes from, they are likely to answer Mom or Dad or, even worse, the ATM. Conceptually, young children don’t comprehend the relationship between a parent’s job and the money coming out of the slot. Still, they can learn simple lessons at an early age.

Frank Tehel, Virginia Beach financial advisor and the owner of Investor’s Tax Services, income tax preparation company, gives practical advice on how to introduce financial literacy and money management concepts to your children:

  • Include your child in financial transactions. If possible, have your child with you when you cash your paycheck, pay bills, and make regular deposits to your savings account. Explain comparison shopping at the grocery store as you choose cereals and snacks. Include the whole family in decisions about whether to purchase significant items today or put the money away for a vacation or trip next summer.
  • Give your child an allowance to manage independently. A weekly allowance given with the understanding that certain chores are part of being a contributing family member can help provide a learning opportunity. Provide enough for necessary expenditures (e.g., school lunches) plus some discretionary funds. Discuss the pros and cons of spending the money in different ways.
  • Create opportunities for your child to earn extra cash for special events or personal items. Discuss the difference between whims, wants, and needs, and give your child regular opportunities to save and see how savings can earn money in the form of interest. This will help them with the first steps toward investment planning in future.
  • Demonstrate the importance of giving. It may be difficult to show your child the effects of poverty, but it can help teach two valuable lessons: the importance of charitable giving and how money can be used to help others.

The saying, “children learn what they live” is true not only for instilling moral values, but also for arming a child with the necessary tools for sound money management. Teaching your children the fundamentals of personal finance now may help them build a financially independent future.

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Protect Your Kids Online

Every day hundreds of parents ask how to protect kids online. Questions range from “should I even let them use the Internet” to ” How can I supervise children when I don’t know how to turn on the computer?”

First,don’t panic.
Second, know that the greatest single risk our children face in connection with the Internet is being denied access. I have a solution for everything else.
Third, you won’t be able to scrutinize everything they do, control every place they visit, or screen everyone they communicate with online. While you might be able to do that for kids under the age of 8, it no longer works when the children become preteens. By then, you have to rely on the filter between their ears.

While parents often ask about the latest software to block and filter websites (check out wirekids.org), block annoying communications (instant-messaging security settings) or check on what your children are doing and who they are talking to online (spectorsoft.com) and while they worry about cracking the chat lingo code (teenangels.org’s chat translator) to learn their children’s secrets, they are missing the point.

It’s not about technology at all. It’s about parenting.

Everything you need to know about keeping your children safe online you have learned from your parents, and they learned from theirs. While you may need me to point out the latest abuses and tricks of the trade, the basics remain unchanged.
“Come straight home after school” – this kept us from hanging around with the wrong crowd and getting into trouble. It’s no different online. The longer the kids spend online (other than for homework purposes), the more likely they are to engage in high-risk activities, such as sharing personal information, meeting strangers offline, and engaging in other cyber activities.

“Don’t take candy from strangers” – you never know what that candy could be laced with. And when you accept anything from strangers online, it may include spyware, hacking programs, and viruses among other tech advances.

“Don’t get into a car with strangers” – or meet them offline (at least not without you in attendance). A stranger is a stranger, but when our kids chat with them for a week, or longer, they don’t feel like a stranger any more. That’s when the real dangers arise.

“Do unto others the way you would have them do unto you”. Adapted for cyberspace, it means never do anything online that you wouldn’t do offline, and never say anything online that you wouldn’t say to the person face-to-face.

“Don’t take anything that isn’t yours” – having our kids download music for free is tempting. But it’s still stealing. It shouldn’t make any difference that other kids are doing it.

If parents teach kids these things, they don’t have to learn about the latest technologies. The list of those is quite extensive and changes constantly anyway. If parents teach kids to come to you when things go wrong online and off, and you can promise not to overreact if they do, children will make it through this in one piece, and so will the parents.

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Water Safety Tips For Kids

The most important rule for swimming is to make sure a responsible adult is supervising and watching each and every child that is in the water. Teach children not to enter the water unless they are being supervised. This is important for them to understand just how dangerous swimming is. Each and every year, unfortunately there are pool related accidents. Most involve drowning when adult supervision is not present.

Backyard Water Park for toddlers Water Safety Tips For Kids

Annually, the ER reports injuries associated with swimming pools. These injuries include diving accidents, head injuries, slips and falls and non-drowning. The risk escalates and increases every spring throughout the entire summer season. This is scary so it’s important to stress water safety.

Pools ought to be fenced in and have alarms to alert you if someone enters the area. Doors leading outside to the pool area must be locked at all times and make sure that little ones can’t get the doors open or gates open by themselves.

Inflatable Waterpark for kids Water Safety Tips For Kids

Additionally, emphasizing the proper use of equipment and pool toys in and around the pool makes great sense. For example, never run around the pool because the payment is wet and can be slippery. It’s hard for kids to learn and actually follow this rule.  Ladders are wet so teach them to hold the rails with both hands.

 

Diving is dangerous in shallow water and a lot of times the children don’t think about the water depth. Caution is needed along with showing them exactly where it is safe to dive or stressing a “no dive policy”. Lastly, when they start to show fatigue it’s time to get out of the pool.

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Importance Of Basic Life Support Courses In Secondary Schools

A new program is sweeping the country with the goal of teaching secondary school students the importance of becoming familiar with advanced cardiac life support and ACLS training programs, and the response to this program has been outstanding. By raising awareness about these courses, the hope is to increase levels of altruism within these students, as well as to increase their overall health-related knowledge. Knowledge about general health issues, with regards to emergency situations in particular tend to be limited in developing countries, which is one of the reasons why this country is perfect for this type of program. The need for this type of course within Malaysia is probably why it has been so well received from the get go.

basic life support courses secondary schools Importance Of Basic Life Support Courses In Secondary Schools

Introducing Students to Medicine

Getting students interested in a BLS certification course is not the only goal of this class; they are also aiming to get students interested in obtaining a tertiary education in medicine, as well as well as give them a holistic view of health and well being. It is not enough to simply teach people to react to emergency situations; it is often best to provide them with the information they need to prevent cardio episodes altogether. Often, these preventative measures include simple facts about nutrition, as well as emergency response information.

Focusing on Secondary School Pupils

By passing on emergency situation information, as well as informing the students of their option to obtain an ACLS certification, the organizers of this program are hoping that the students will grow up and pass down this information to future generations. A sustainable program is one that will keep going long after the organizers have left the schools, and these tools will not only provide short term benefits, but long lasting advantages too.

Programs such as these aim to have long lasting effects that will radiate outwards from the schools in which they are taught so that entire communities, regions and nations can contribute from them. Research has shown that by teaching these programs to secondary scholars, their retention of the information is much better than students in primary schools, although refresher courses are often required to ensure they remember most of the emergency responses over a longer period of time.

The promotion of BLS, ACLS and even PALS courses in schools is helping to provide scholars with the tools that they need to react in time so that they might just be able to save a life, or possibly many, and this makes it a very exciting program indeed.

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Playground Safety Tips For Kids

Children all over the country are heading outside to play and with springs arrival they are looking forward to playtime outdoors. Making sure they are safe outside; by providing safety tips and education to them ought to be a priority for parents. With summer vacation right around the corner now is the time to review both playground safety and water safety tips with your kids.

Unfortunately, sometimes adult supervision isn’t present and reviewing some of the suggested guidelines below should help them to play safer. Research shows that emergency room visits increase during the summer due to playground accidents or other outdoor related activities. A lot of these injuries are unnecessary and by following safety guidelines they can be prevented. Putting a stop to accidents ought to be a main goal and concern for everybody.

Playground safety is important and when visiting local parks and playgrounds you need to visually inspect the equipment. If the chains or links show distress then keep off of them. Look for links that are coming apart. If the belt swings are splitting do not allow anyone to use it. If the park has metal slides from years ago make sure it isn’t hot otherwise the kids might get burned. Truthfully, try to keep them off of metal slides. Most of these slides have been replaced by plastic ones because they heat up quickly and they are dangerous. If you notice exposed pieces of cement that were used to secure components into the ground and they are now above ground; keep the kids off of them.

The ground cover underneath the playground should have a cushioning cover such as rubber mulch or wood chips. This helps to absorb the fall of a child should it happen.

When it’s just to hot to go outside and play what should you do? That’s a tough question and the other part of that question is preventing sunburns and dehydration.  Whether you are at a ballgame or playing in the backyard it’s important to avoid overheating so you won’t have to deal with heat stroke. Keeping hydrated is important and kids tend to dehydrate quicker than adults so encourage them to drink a lot of water.

Sunburns occur and they are agonizing for a child so it’s best to take necessary steps to avoid it from happening. Making sure children know to apply sunscreen before going outside and to reapply it as often as needed. The new spray sunscreen products on the market make it easier for kids to apply. They also seem to get sun burned quicker so applying it is very important. Wearing a hat and staying in the shade offers some relief.

radio flyer Family Wagon Playground Safety Tips For Kids

Radio Flyer Family wagon – click to view the product

When shopping for outdoor toys search for products that have canopies. For example; the Radio Flyer Red Wagons or Kettler Tricycles are sold with options for attaching a canopy. This provides shade for your toddlers and these accessories easily attach to wagons and trikes. A few of the Radio Flyer wagons come with a cooler option which is perfect for taking along bottles of water. Many kids play tents offer windows for ventilation or look for the sun shade tents and kids play houses; as these products work great for the beach. Step2 sells a Play and Shade Pool for toddlers and it comes with an umbrella. For the pool; there are plenty of baby floats that have sun shade covers. Many are made by Swim Ways and Sun Smart companies. There are plenty of sandboxes and picnic tables with tarps that are made for toddlers and sized just for them. They all love to play with sand and having a cover above makes great sense.

When kids start to feel overheated it’s best to get them quickly indoors. If you are out in the sun and it’s hot make sure you have plenty of water to drink and sunscreen is applied over and over again. Remember to wear sunglasses.

These playground safety tips are sure to help your kids to stay healthy while having lots of fun all summer long.

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How Kids Learn When Playing

As your infants and little tikes continue to get bigger and stronger their playtime increases. Playing with toys is very fun and you will need to have age appropriate playthings in the toy box or play room. Also, you will need to pick toys that are fun, engaging and offer educational value as well. Mom, dad and caregivers provide a vital role in fostering child’s learning experiences.

Most boys and girls learn when playing. Many young children learn by using their senses. Touching, seeing, and hearing brings out a children’s natural curiosities. The goal of educations toys is for the child to figure things out and learn how toys work. This is a challenge for toddlers and helps them to learn problem solving techniques.

bucket top construction set How Kids Learn When Playing

For example, think of the puzzle and how kids learn the placement of where each piece goes and how the picture is then completed. Another example is building blocks and how children learn to build and create all sorts of interesting designs. These types of playthings really facilitate skill development that will last a lifetime. Many teachers in preschool of early education will tell you having play blocks in the classroom is essential. They will also declare them as one of the best educational toys on the market. Teachers love them in the classroom.

Getting little ones to be creative is easy when they have educational toys. Children want to learn and be creative with their own thoughts and ideas. Creativity is fun for young children. They are naturally curious about the environment around them and when objects are within their reach they instantly play. Not only are they curious about different shapes objects like building blocks for toddlers, construction toys, train sets, kids are also interested in numbers, letters, and different types of symbols such as stop signs and red or green flashing lights.

Toys and games are a great way to introduce letters and numbers to a little toddler. Educational games will help them foster skill development, educational toys develop creativity and make learning fun.

Another way they learn and grow is through exercise and there are plenty of outside activities that accomplish this. Riding a tricycle or bicycle, running, jumping, pulling a wagon or swimming and drawing with chalk on the sidewalks are just a few examples.

Remember, when children are busy and exploring their surroundings and playing with toys they are learning. After all, playing is educational; teaching all sorts of things to them each and every day!

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