Kids Newsletter July 2016

July 1: National Creative Ice Cream Flavor Day

ice cream

In 1984, Ronald Reagan deemed July "National Ice Cream Month" and the third Sunday of this month "National Ice Cream Day." As great as the treat itself is, we're big fans of those unusual flavor combinations that make you question the limitations of culinary science and marvel at their possibilities! Ben and Jerry might have the offbeat flavor market cornered for now, but to be safe you should probably head for your local ice creamery to "test" their strongest contenders.Fourth of July!

The Declaration of Independence was approved by the Continental Congress on the 4th of July, 1776 − now known as Independence Day − and every year Americans honor the birthday of the United States of America.

Let's Read

"Curious George and the Ice Cream Surprise" by H.A. Rey

George is looking for a way to beat the summer heat. Swimming, running through sprinklers, a glass of lemonade − none can help George cool off! What George really wants is a sweet, cold treat from the ice cream truck, but will he ever catch it?

"F Is for Flag" by Wendy Cheyette Lewison

Many American flags are proudly displayed on Independence Day and other days throughout the year. Perfect for reading together with a young child, "F is for Flag" shows in simple terms how one flag can mean many things: a symbol of unity, a sign of welcome and a reminder that in good times and in bad everyone in our country is part of one great big family.

Did You Know?

  • Until the 18th century, the word July in English had the stress on the first syllable and rhymed with duly or truly.
  • Although six months have passed, July 1 is not the mid-point of the year. The exact halfway point comes at 1pm on July 3 in a non-leap year.
  • No month ends on the same day of the week as July unless it is a leap year, when January does so.
  • July's birthstone is the ruby, which is said to symbolize contentment.
  • Seven U.S. presidents have died in July, which is more than any other month.
  • July is on average the warmest month of the year.

Let's Be Healthy

  1. Get active each day.
  2. Choose water as a drink.
  3. Eat more fruit and vegetables.
  4. Switch off the screen, and get active.
  5. Eat fewer snacks, and select healthier alternatives.

Let's Have Fun

Fun things to do at a park!

  • Draw a nature map of your local park. Walk the park, and then draw the map of the park including important features and details from your walk.
  • Picnic in the park. Bring a blanket and your favorite foods to enjoy the nice weather. Don't forget to pick up your trash and to recycle.
  • Walk. Before or after dinner, take some time to walk together with your family. Discuss what happened during the day while getting a little exercise.
  • Create your own Olympic Games. Who has the fastest time running from one tree to another? How many high jumps can you do in one minute? Use your neighborhood park to create Olympic Games.
  • Make art from nature. Press flowers, glitter pinecones or draw part of your favorite park. Bring a little bit of nature back home with you.
  • Watch the clouds. There is nothing better than to spend some time cloud watching in a park on a sunny day. Lie down on the grass, and start to identify shapes.
  • Start a rock collection. Collect all different shapes and sizes, colors and surfaces. Another great way to bring a bit of the outdoors home with you.

Let's Cook

Salad Snack on a Stick

Salad on a Stick
  • Olives: California olives, ripe black or ripe green, extra large
  • Tomatoes: grape, cherry, chocolate cherry, sunburst
  • Cheese: ciliegine, or mini mozzarella balls, cubes of cheddar
  • Meats, sliced very thin: prosciutto, black forest ham, roast beef, oven roasted turkey
  • Greens: butter lettuce, green leaf, romaine
  • Wooden skewers

Thread an assortment of olives, tomatoes, cheese, meats and greens through the skewers. Pile the skewers on a tray or platter, and enjoy!

Let's Get Creative

Popsicle Stick American Flags

Popsicle American Flag

Materials:

  • 10 popsicle sticks (we used jumbo ones)
  • white paper or card stock and star-shaped hole punch (or: stickers, paint, paper, etc.)
  • red and blue paint and a paintbrush
  • scissors
  • glue

Instructions:

  • Cut two 3½-inch sticks and three 3-inch sticks.
  • Paint the popsicle sticks. You won't need to paint the 3 ½-inch sticks − you'll use those to glue your stripes on. They'll be in the back, so you won't see them. Paint the three 3-inch sticks blue and three uncut sticks red.
  • After the paint dries, glue the five stripe sticks (the five uncut sticks) to one of the 3½-inch sticks, alternating red and white. Then glue the other 3 1/2-inch stick to the opposite end of the flag for support. Let the flag dry.
  • Then glue the three little blue sticks to the top left corner of your flag.
  • Punch little stars out of your white paper or card stock with your star punch. If you don't have a star punch, you can use stickers or paint, or cut out stars with scissors.
  • Glue on the stars, and let the flag dry well. If you want to make the flag for holding, glue an extra popsicle stick to the bottom of the flag so you can wave it around. Make sure it's glued on tightly.

Let's Go Exploring

Stay cool and go exploring in your local library! The William F. Laman Public Library children's department in North Little Rock has events, activities and of course, books.

What's New

In PBS KIDS Measure Up! you can visit a world with characters from PBS KIDS' "Dinosaur Train," "Peg + Cat" and "Sid the Science Kid." You can explore concepts of length, width, capacity and weight while collecting rewards through a combination of games, videos and activities.  PBS.org/kids

Free Download: Fun (and Educational) Summer Vacation Activities

Kids generally love vacations. But, there are some parts they don't always love so much, such as getting there or waiting in restaurants. Check out these games, puzzles and learning pages. You can print the pages you like best. Then work on activity sheets whenever you feel "bored"!

Watch your favorites online!

  • "Bob the Builder: Watch Out Pilchard" – July 2
    "Bob the Builder: Don't Muck it Up" – July 9
  • "The Cat in the Hat Knows A Lot About Camping!" – July 25
  • "Nature Cat: Slime Time/Rock Stars" – July 11
    "Nature Cat: Gimme Shelter/Goin' Batty" – July 12
    "Nature Cat: The Legend of Gold Gardens/Winter Dance Party" – July 13
    "Nature Cat: Ice is Nice/Bird's Eye View" – July 14
  • "Peg + Cat: The George Washington Problem/The High Noon Problem" – July 1
    "Peg + Cat: The Camp Problem/The Two Homes Problem" – July 4
  • "Odd Squad: Oscar Strikes Back" – July 5
    "Odd Squad: Olympia's Day/Otis's Day" – July 6
    "Odd Squad: And Then They Were Puppies/A Case of the Sillies" – July 7
    "Odd Squad: Happy Halfiversary/ Good Egg Bad Egg" – July 8
    "Odd Squad: Night Shift/Put Me in Coach" – July 11
  • "Wild Kratts: Panda Power Up" – July 19
    "Wild Kratts: Pangolin Rescue" – July 20
    "Wild Kratts: Golden Snub Nosed Monkey Man" – July 21
    "Wild Kratts: Red Panda Rescue" – July 22
    "Wild Kratts: The Colors of China" – July 25

Play, watch and learn with your favorite series at pbskids.org. Check out activities and resources, and follow our blog, at aetn.org/parents. For educational resources at home and in the classroom, including a downloadable resource guide, visit…