Screen Time and Free Time

Screen Time
It is probably inevitable that in this day and age, our children are going to spend some time each day in front of a “screen”-computer or t.v. If you paid attention to my summer schedule you probably noticed that the Ant Bug has screen time every afternoon. The Ant Bugs screen time gives me one-on-one time with the Sweet Bee to get her ready for a nap, and gives me a little time to myself (I confess, I usually take a 10 minute power nap then).

Here are the sites that she most frequently visits.

Starfall.com: Where children have fun learning to read!
This is my number one recommended site. There are four levels: Starfall ABCs, Learn to Read, Fun to Read, I’m Reading. Everything is presented in a fun, interactive manner. The Ant Bug started using this site when she was 2 years old and she hasn’t tired of it yet. I can’t say enough good about it, so just go check it out.

PBS Kids: Curius George, Super Why, Sesame Street–all the favorites

NickJr.: Dora, Diego, Blue, etc.

Sesame Street

Storyline Online: Actors read childrens books aloud

Spell with flickr: Have fun with letters doing things like this

KMcElman_090514_A2 letter B letter C

Bembo’s Zoo: This is just really cool

And two sites where you can make art without a mess:
Crayola.com
jacksonpollock.org

Leave a note in the comments if you have a great site for children to share!

Free Time
As you plan out your summer, I just wanted to make you aware of a few great “freebies”.
Mars Real Chocolate Relief Act: Get free chocolate every Friday this summer (limit of 4 per household–I’ve already received one coupon in the mail)

National Park Fee-Free Weekends: There are 3 fee-free weekends at many National Parks this summer. Check this list for a park you might like to visit.

Don’t forget to check out your local library! Most libraries offer some kind of summer reading program with prizes and activities. Check the calendar for free events. Last week we went to a Music Together class and this week we went to a juggler show. Lots of variety and lots of fun!

For more ideas for cheap summer fun visit Being Frugal is Fabulous.

3 thoughts on “Screen Time and Free Time

  1. I just love your blog – you have so mnay great ideas!! Do you have any older posts of activities for one-year olds??

  2. Sarah–that's a great question! I haven't addressed the younger age group very much on this blog. Anything that stimulates the senses is great (just be watchful of choking hazards since everything goes into the mouth). My 16-month old loved sticking her hands in the bowl and scooping rice. Water play is great (and perfect for hot weather). Give them an assortment of "scoopers" (measuring cups, spoons, etc) and a large bowl of water or a sink. We're going to try finger painting with yogurt soon, which would work well for young one's.

    I'll think about this some more. I can sense another post coming soon!

  3. That would be great. I love the finger paint with yogurt. I did do finger painting with water soluble paint, he had fun mixing the colors and slapping the paper I had taped to the table – I don't think I blinked the whole time though for fear he would put his hands in his mouth:). Thanks for the ideas!

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